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    Refugees walked in heavy rain from a public transport centre to Lappia-building refugee reception centre in Tornio, northwestern Finland

    Helsinki to Continue Deporting Migrants Arriving Through Russian Territory

    © REUTERS / Jussi Nukari/Lehtikuva
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    Mikva Raatikainen, a member of the Finnish parliament from The Finns Party said that illegal immigrants that cross from the Russian territory can and will be sent back to Russia because Helsinki considers Russia to be a safe country for returning migrants.

    VIENNA (Sputnik), Svetlana Alexandrova — Helsinki will continue to deport migrants who arrive in Finland through Russian territory, back to Russia, Mikva Raatikainen, a member of the Finnish parliament from The Finns Party told Sputnik on Saturday.

    Officials in the northern Russian city of Murmansk estimate that up to 20 people cross into Finland through Russia on a daily basis. In January, Finnish Foreign Minister Timo Soini called for urgent measures to protect the Finnish border from the arrival of asylum seekers through Russia.

    "Illegal immigrants that cross from the Russian territory can and will be sent back to Russia because we consider Russia to be a safe country for returning migrants that are not eligible for a refugee status and nothing prohibits us to send them back to the country from where they have crossed into Finland," Mika Raatikainen said at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Parliamentary Assembly.

    Anu Vehvilainen (L), Annika Saarikko, Chairman Juha Sipila and Juha Rehula of the Centre Party celebrate at the party's parliamentary elections reception in Helsinki after the results of the votes
    © REUTERS / Markku Ulander/Lehtikuva
    The lawmaker expressed hope that Russia will "take care of the situation on the border."

    Russian Ambassador to Finland Alexander Rumyantsev told RIA Novosti earlier this month only over 1,000 asylum seekers crossed into Finland from Russia over the past few months. In comparison, he said over 30,000 refugees came to Finland through Sweden during the same period.

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    Tags:
    refugees, migrants, Mikva Raatikainen, Russia, Finland
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