MP Ozan Yanar is right: President Sauli Niinistö’s New Year’s speech is problematic

by , under Enrique Tessieri

Whenever President Sauli Niinistö comments about asylum seekers, migrants and minorities there is usually a problem (see links below). Those of us who are anti-racist activists, will never forget his two-extremes argument, which puts people who fight to defend human rights as one extreme with the other extreme consisting of Neo-Nazis and other far-right groups like the Perussuomalaiset.*

His New Year’s speech didn’t leave us disappointed. Green League MP Ozan Yanar rightly pointed out some of the flaws in his speech about migrants.

The president said that migrants should take responsibility by “exerting control” over the actions of members of its community, tweeted MP Yanar. Migrants are not a monolithic group.


President Niinistö responds to MP Yanar’s tweet by stating that he did not mean migrants but everyone irrespective of their background. If this is true, why didn’t he say so in his New Year’s speech?

I have mentioned it before and I will state it again: President Niinistö is no friend of Finland’s culturally and ethnically diverse community. It is unfortunate that he prefers to hand out populist soundbites.

Well done MP Yanar for pointing out once again Finland’s issues with migrants, minorities and our ever-growing culturally diverse society.

This must change.

See also:

The Perussuomalaiset (PS) party imploded on June 13, 2017 into two factions, the PS and New Alternative, which is now called Blue Reform. Despite the name changes, we believe that it is the same party in different clothing. Both factions are hostile to cultural diversity never mind Muslims and other visible minorities. One is more open about it while the other says it in a different way. 

A direct translation of Perussuomalaiset in English would be something like “basic” or “fundamental Finn.” Official translations of the Finnish name of the party, such as Finns Party or True Finns, promote in our opinion nativist nationalism and racism. We, therefore, at Migrant Tales prefer to use in our postings the Finnish name of the party once and after that the acronym PS.