Finland closes four checkpoints on the border with Russia

Anna Kholodnova

On November 16, Finnish Prime Minister Petteri Orpo and Interior Minister Mari Rantanen announced the closure of checkpoints on the countryʼs eastern border until February 18, 2024.

This is reported by the Finnish broadcaster Yle.

Checkpoints on the eastern border will be closed at night against November 18. Namely:

  • Vaalimaa — from Russian — Torfyanovka,
  • Nuyyamaa — Brusnicnoe,
  • Imatra — Svetogorsk,
  • Niirala — Värtsilä.

The Vartius, Salla, Kuusamo and Raja-Yosepi border crossings will remain open.

What happened?

In recent years, Finland has been preparing for the fact that Russia will send a large number of asylum seekers to the border. The Russians have already done this on the Finnish border during the migration crisis of 2015.

Many migrants move to Finland on bicycles without the necessary papers, without working bicycle lights and helmets. On November 12 , Finland banned crossing the border with Russia on bicycles.

The number of Russian-Finnish border crossings remained relatively small, but continues to grow. As of 06:30 on November 15, 36 asylum seekers arrived at the border. As of 22:00 on November 15, there were 75. In the two previous days, 94 people were registered. For comparison, in the four months to November 12, there were a total of 91.

The representative of the border guard of Finland said that among the migrants there are citizens of Iraq, Yemen and Syria, who arrived in Russia legally, but did not have permission to enter Finland.

On November 15, the Prime Minister of Finland stated that Russia helps illegal migrants enter the country. According to him, Russian border guards are involved in this.