Finnish PM does not keep his promise to house refugees

Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila says he cannot fulfill his promise of opening his house to refugees because of security concerns

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila arrives at the European Union (EU) Council headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, June 25, 2015

Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila said that he can not keep his promise to house a refugee family at his private property due to rising security concerns.  

In September, Spila pledged to open his second home, located in his home town of Kempele in northern Finland, to refugees. 

The Prime Minister currently owns one house near the capital Helsinki. He also owns a government residence.

On Sunday, during a broadcasted radio programme he said that the plan was postponed but that he would support the refugees until the situation changes in the country.  

"I asked security experts to evaluate whether it would be safe for a family with children to move in. Due to the heavy publicity, the situation is such that it would not be reasonable right now."

Following his decision, Sipila faced heavy criticism from some politicians and members of the public for encouraging refugees to come into the country.   

Finnish Interior Ministry said on Thursday that the country expects to expel around 20,000 of the 32,000 asylum seekers it received in 2015.

"In principle we speak of about two-thirds, meaning approximately 65 percent of the 32,000 will get a negative decision (to their asylum application)," Paivi Nerg, the ministry's administrative director told AFP.

More than 20,000 of the asylum seekers Finland welcomed in 2015 came from Iraq.

Last year, 32,000 refugees entered Finland. The number was 3,600 more than 2014’s statistics.  

TRTWorld and agencies