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Ryan Robertson

Anchor/Investigative Reporter

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International

Finland accuses Russia of luring migrants for its ‘own political purposes’

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Ryan Robertson

Anchor/Investigative Reporter

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Russia’s neighbors say the country is using migrants at the Finnish border to help fight its war with Ukraine. Finland claims Russia is making the immigration crisis at the border worse, and now the BBC reports several cases of migrants being rushed into a Russian military camp at the eastern border, days after the asylum-seekers were detained for breaking immigration laws.

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Finland’s government said Moscow is purposefully allowing undocumented migrants to cross the eastern border, working to create instability in the region. Officials claim that Russia is using asylum-seekers for its “own political purposes.”

Finland took action, closing down its entire eastern border and installing barriers at four of the nine crossings with Russia. The stations will remain closed until February, according to the Finnish Border Guard.

Poland is also sending troops to Finland’s border with Russia to ramp up security.

Russia denied the accusations.

A Kremlin spokesperson said Friday, Dec. 8, that Finland is making a “big mistake” by choosing a path to confrontation with Russia, according to state news agency TASS.

The Finnish government warned the influx of migrants is creating a national security and public order threat.

The Guardian reported that some asylum-seekers are braving arctic temperatures as they try to find refuge. Many are on bicycles and wearing clothing that is not suitable for the extreme temperatures.

The U.N. and refugee advocacy groups expressed concern, saying the border closure will prevent people from seeking asylum and warned the closure violates international law.

Finland’s non-discrimination ombudsman criticized the government’s border crossing closures, claiming they will seriously endanger the fundamental right to seek asylum.

During the closure, asylum-seekers are being directed to air and seaports.

Just last week, Finland’s Border Guard said it saw around 300 asylum-seekers, mostly from Iraq, Yemen, Somalia and Syria. Since August, government officials reported to have seen thousands seeking asylum.

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[RYAN ROBERTSON]

RUSSIA’S NEIGHBORS SAY THE COUNTRY IS USING MIGRANTS AT THE FINNISH BORDER TO HELP FIGHT ITS WAR WITH UKRAINE.

FINLAND SAYS RUSSIA IS MAKING THE IMMIGRATION CRISIS AT THE BORDER WORSE, AND NOW THE BBC REPORTS THEY’VE SEEN SEVERAL CASES OF MIGRANTS BEING RUSHED INTO A RUSSIAN MILITARY CAMP AT THE EASTERN BORDER, DAYS AFTER THE ASYLUM SEEKERS WERE PICKED UP FOR BREAKING IMMIGRATION LAWS.

THE FINNISH GOVERNMENT SAYS MOSCOW IS PURPOSEFULLY ALLOWING UNDOCUMENTED MIGRANTS TO CROSS THE EASTERN BORDER, WORKING TO CREATE INSTABILITY IN THE REGION.

GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS SAY RUSSIA IS USING ASYLUM SEEKERS FOR ITS “OWN POLITICAL PURPOSES.”

FINLAND TOOK ACTION, CLOSING DOWN ITS ENTIRE EASTERN BORDER, AND INSTALLING BARRIERS AT FOUR OF THE NINE CROSSINGS WITH RUSSIA. 

THE STATIONS WILL REMAIN CLOSED UNTIL LATE FEBRUARY, ACCORDING TO THE FINNISH BORDER GUARD. 

POLAND IS ALSO SENDING TROOPS TO FINLAND’S BORDER WITH RUSSIA TO RAMP UP SECURITY. 

RUSSIA DENIED THE ACCUSATIONS AND A KREMLIN SPOKESPERSON SAID FRIDAY FINLAND WAS MAKING A “BIG MISTAKE” BY CHOOSING A PATH TO CONFRONTATION WITH RUSSIA, ACCORDING TO STATE NEWS AGENCY “TASS.”

THE FINNISH GOVERNMENT WARNED THE INFLUX OF MIGRANTS, IS CREATING A NATIONAL SECURITY AND PUBLIC ORDER THREAT.

RECENTLY, THE GUARDIAN REPORTED SOME ASYLUM SEEKERS ARE BRAVING ARCTIC TEMPERATURES AS THEY TRY TO FIND REFUGE, MANY ON BICYCLES AND WEARING CLOTHING NOT SUITABLE FOR THE EXTREME TEMPERATURES. 

THE UN AND REFUGEE ADVOCACY GROUPS EXPRESSED CONCERN, SAYING THE BORDER CLOSURE WILL PREVENT PEOPLE FROM SEEKING ASYLUM AND WARNED THE CLOSURE VIOLATES INTERNATIONAL LAW. 

FINLAND’S NON-DISCRIMINATION OMBUDSMAN DECRIED THE GOVERNMENT’S BORDER CROSSING CLOSURES, CLAIMING THEY WILL SERIOUSLY ENDANGER THE FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT TO SEEK ASYLUM. 

DURING THE CLOSURE, ASYLUM SEEKERS ARE BEING DIRECTED TO AIR AND (SEA?) PORTS. 

JUST LAST WEEK, FINLAND’S BORDER GUARD SAID IT SAW AROUND 300 ASYLUM SEEKERS, MOSTLY FROM IRAQ, YEMEN, SOMALIA AND SYRIA.

THIS COMES AFTER FINLAND SAID IT SAW A MAJOR INCREASE IN MIGRANTS AT THE BORDER. SINCE AUGUST, THE GOVERNMENT SAYS THEY’VE SEEN THOUSANDS SEEKING ASYLUM.