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[1/2] Closed Vaalimaa border station between Finland and Russia in Virolahti, Finland on November 29, 2023. Finland closes temporarily its sole remaining border crossing with Russia. "A team of military advisers will provide on-site knowledge on border security, also in operational terms," he said. Finland's Border Guard and the interior ministry both said they were unaware of any plan to bring Polish military advisers to Finland's eastern border. Finland infuriated Russia earlier this year when it joined NATO, ending decades of military non-alignment, due to the war in Ukraine.
Persons: Lehtikuva, Lauri Heino, Jacek Siewiera, Dmitry Peskov, Sauli Niinisto, Andrzej Duda, Anne Kauranen, Felix Light, Andrew Osborn, Gareth Jones Organizations: REUTERS Acquire, Kremlin, Polish National Security Bureau, NATO, Finland's Border Guard, Reuters, Thomson Locations: Finland, Russia, Virolahti, MOSCOW, HELSINKI, Moscow, Poland, Helsinki, Finnish, Warsaw, Ukraine
[1/2] Closed Vaalimaa border station between Finland and Russia in Virolahti, Finland on November 29, 2023. Finland closes temporarily its sole remaining border crossing with Russia. "A team of military advisors will provide on-site knowledge on border security, also in operational terms," he said. Finland has closed its border with Russia after a sudden wave of refugee arrivals that Helsinki said was orchestrated by Moscow, something Russia has denied. In a call with reporters, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in reference to Poland's possible moving of troops to the border: "This is an absolutely redundant measure to ensure border security, because there is no threat there."
Persons: Lehtikuva, Lauri Heino, Jacek Siewiera, Sauli Niinisto, Andrzej Duda, Dmitry Peskov, Anne Kauranen, Felix Light, Andrew Osborn, Bernadette Baum Organizations: REUTERS Acquire, stoke, Poland's National Security, Reuters, Thomson Locations: Finland, Russia, Virolahti, MOSCOW, HELSINKI, Poland, Helsinki, Moscow, Warsaw
Now, hundreds of migrants from the Middle East and Africa have appeared at Finland's border from Russia, seeking entry into the Nordic country. They accuse Russia of driving the migrants to the border to sow discord as payback for Finland's membership in NATO. Finnish authorities quickly closed four checkpoints and then three more, leaving just one Arctic crossing point open for asylum-seekers. Finland also asked for help from EU border agency Frontex, which said it would send dozens of officers and equipment as reinforcements to the Finnish border. The Kremlin denies encouraging the migrants, and says it regrets the Finnish border closures.
Persons: Elina Valtonen, Petteri Orpo, Maria Zakharova, Valtonen, Russia’s, , Klaus Dodds, ” Dodds, Ylva Johansson, Sauli Niinistö, Alexander Lukashenko, Evika Siliņa, Siliņa, Lukashenko, Vladimir Putin, , Geert Wilders, Orpo’s, Vanessa Gera Organizations: HELSINKI, , NATO, Nordic, Associated Press, HOW, EU, Frontex, Russian Foreign Ministry, Royal Holloway, University of London, VU EU Home Affairs, Belarus —, Latvian, AP, Poland’s, Guard Locations: Finland, Russia, East, Africa, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Finnish, FINLAND, Helsinki, Belarus, Europe, Moscow, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Baltic, Netherlands, Finns, Lapland, Murmansk, Warsaw
"The government has today decided to close more border stations," Orpo told a press conference. Finland said Russia was letting migrants through those two crossing points by foot despite an agreement that they could only be crossed by car. "There are growing signs that the situation is worsening on the eastern border," Orpo said. Finland will shut three of the four remaining border crossing points from midnight on Friday, leaving only the Raja-Jooseppi crossing in the Arctic open. "Raja-Jooseppi is the northernmost (border crossing) and it requires a real effort to get there," Orpo said.
Persons: Petteri Orpo, Orpo, Ylva Johansson, Sauli Niinisto, Moscow's, Essi Lehto, Jacob Gronholt, Pedersen, Alexandra Hudson, Christina Fincher, Mark Heinrich Our Organizations: Nordic, European Union, Kremlin, Finland, Russia, Thomson Locations: HELSINKI, Finland, Russia, Helsinki, Moscow, Yemen, Afghanistan, Kenya, Morocco, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, EU, Estonia, Baltic, Finnish, Vartius, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus, East, Africa
Finland has accused Russia of sending undocumented migrants across the border. It says 300 migrants have arrived at the border with the help of Russian officials. AdvertisementA vengeful Russia is attempting to stoke a migrant crisis in Finland by sending hundreds of asylum across the border on bicycles and scooters, authorities in Helsinki say. Finnish officials also said that Russia has been giving out bicycles and scooters to migrants because people are banned from walking between the Russian and Finnish border checkpoints, according to The Telegraph. Finland has an 830-mile-long border with Russia, forming the easternmost boundary of the European Union.
Persons: , Petteri Orpo, Orpo, Sauli Niinistö, Dmitry Peskov, It's, Alexander Lukashenko Organizations: Experts, Russia, NATO, Service, Reuters, The Telegraph, Kremlin, European Union Locations: Finland, Russia, stoke, Helsinki, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, United States, Europe, Belarus, Russian, Poland
Finland's President Sauli Niinisto addresses the 78th United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., September 20, 2023. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs/File Photo Acquire Licensing RightsHELSINKI, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Finland said on Monday it had become impossible to return asylum seekers who did not meet the criteria for protection and said that it might further restrict migrant entries from Russia following a jump in the number of applicants. Over 500 asylum seekers, mostly from Yemen, Somalia, Syria and Iraq, arrived in Finland - an eastern outpost of the European Union - via Russia in the past two weeks, prompting Helsinki to shut half its border crossings and accuse Moscow of funnelling migrants to its border. Migrants entering Finland from Russia can now only request asylum at two of the remaining four crossing points on their shared 1,340-km (830-mile) border. The Kremlin said on Monday it had lodged a formal protest over the partial border closure, saying the decision reflected an anti-Russian stance.
Persons: Sauli Niinisto, Caitlin Ochs, Niinisto, Petteri Orpo, Orpo, Tomi Kivenjuuri, Kivenjuuri, Moscow's, Essi Lehto, Terje Solsvik, Anna Ringstrom, Jonathan Oatis, Gareth Jones Organizations: United Nations General Assembly, REUTERS, Rights, European, Migrants, Finnish Border Guard, Reuters, Thomson Locations: U.N, New York, U.S, Finland, Russia, Yemen, Somalia, Syria, Iraq, Helsinki, Moscow, Poland, EU, Finnish, Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus, East, Africa, Oslo, Stockholm
Finland said on Thursday that it was closing part of its border with Russia after a dramatic increase in migrant crossings that it blamed on Moscow, the latest sign of deteriorating relations between the neighbors since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The announcement followed days of warnings from the authorities in Finland over an increase in crossings, which President Sauli Niinisto of Finland on Wednesday suggested was retaliation from Moscow for Finland’s decision to join NATO. Prime Minister Petteri Orpo said at a news conference on Thursday that Finland was closing four crossings on its eastern border starting at midnight on Friday. The government wanted to “react strongly,” he said, to what it viewed as “organized activity” by Russia. “Therefore we have been prepared for various action from Russia, nastiness, and this situation does not come to us as a surprise.”
Persons: Sauli Niinisto, Petteri Orpo, Organizations: NATO Locations: Finland, Russia, Moscow, Ukraine, “ Finland
[1/3] A view of the border between Russia and Finland at the Nuijamaa border checkpoint in Lappeenranta, Finland on November 15, 2023. An increasing number of citizens from third countries have arrived via Russia to Finnish border-crossing points without proper documentation this autumn. Finland has no... Acquire Licensing Rights Read moreHELSINKI, Nov 15 (Reuters) - Further groups of asylum seekers arrived on Wednesday at Finland's southeastern border via Russia, officials said, adding to a sudden surge that might spur the Nordic country to restrict access. Finland's government on Tuesday accused Russia of funnelling asylum seekers to crossing points along the frontier and said it might limit access unless Russian authorities reverse course. On Tuesday, 55 asylum seekers were recorded by officials, while Wednesday afternoon's figure stood at 66 and rising, Finnish Border Guard Lieutenant Colonel Jukka Lukkari said.
Persons: Sauli Niinisto, Finland's, Dmitry Peskov, Jukka Lukkari, Jukka Laine, Laine, Essi Lehto, Anne Kauranen, Mark Heinrich Our Organizations: Union, NATO, EU, Finnish Border Guard, University of Eastern, Finnish Refugee Council, Thomson Locations: Russia, Finland, Lappeenranta, Finnish, HELSINKI, Finland's, Moscow, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, Syria, University of Eastern Finland
HELSINKI (AP) — Finnish police said Wednesday they have launched a criminal investigation into possible sabotage of an undersea gas pipeline between Finland and Estonia that was shut down over the weekend following a leak. It is bi-directional, transferring natural gas between Finland and Estonia depending on demand and supply. The company said a liquified natural gas terminal in Inkoo has the capacity to deliver the gas Finland needs. Europe saw natural gas prices hit record highs last year after Russia’s cutoff of most gas supplies during the war in Ukraine. Europe currently has filled 97% of its gas storage capacity for the winter, but security of supply depends on deliveries of pipeline gas and LNG.
Persons: NBI, , Risto Lohi, Jens Stoltenberg, Sauli Niinistö, Kaja Kallas, ” Stoltenberg, Dmitry Peskov, Peskov, Organizations: HELSINKI, National Bureau of, NATO, YLE, , European Union, Estonian Locations: Finland, Estonia, Gulf, Finnish, Inkoo, Estonian, Paldiski, Germany, Russia, Baltic, Brussels, Baltics, Europe, Ukraine
Gasgrid, Finland’s gas transmission operator, said Sunday that it had temporarily shut the 95-mile-long Balticconnector pipeline, running under the Baltic Sea, over a suspected leak. Moreover, Finland can still source gas via its LNG terminal, and Estonia is still connected to the European gas grid via Lithuania. An ‘alarm bell’Gasgrid and its Estonian counterpart Elering “noticed an unusual drop in pressure in the Balticconnector offshore gas pipeline” on Sunday morning, Gasgrid said Tuesday. “It is reasonable to suspect that the cause of the incident was damage to the offshore gas pipeline,” the company said in a statement. “The European [gas] market remains very tight, and any news is having an impact,” said Sharples at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies.
Persons: Gasgrid, Sauli Niinistö, Jens Stoltenberg, ” Stoltenberg, Jack Sharples, Elering “, Kaja Kallas, Simone Tagliapietra, , Sharples, — James Frater, Sharon Braithwaite Organizations: London CNN, NATO, Finnish Border Guard, European Union, CNN, Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, Estonian, Estonia’s, Authorities, Germany —, EU, Chevron Locations: Finland, Estonia, Baltic, Brussels, Lithuania, Latvia, Europe, United Kingdom, Germany, Nord, Norway, Algeria, Israel
The Balticconnector gas pipeline was shut early on Sunday on concerns that gas was leaking from a hole in the 77-km (48-mile) pipeline. Finnish operator Gasgrid said it could take months or more to repair. "It is likely that damage to both the gas pipeline and the communication cable is the result of outside activity. The damage to the gas pipeline was believed to have taken place in Finnish waters, while the telecoms cable breach was in Estonian waters, Finnish authorities said. Prices were already up on Tuesday due to fears over tensions in the Middle East but expectations that outside activity caused the pipeline damage pushed prices in the nervous market higher.
Persons: Jens Stoltenberg, Gasgrid, Sauli Niinisto, Petteri Orpo, Orpo, Elisa, Timo Kilpelainen, Terje Solsvik, Anne Kauranen, Anna Ringstrom, Andrius, Marta Frackowiak, Louise Rasmussen, Susanna Twidale, Julia Payne, Bart Meijer, Gwladys Fouche, Susan Fenton, Jonathan Oatis Organizations: Finnish Border Guard, Companies Gas, PM, NATO, Reuters, Finnish, Amber Grid, Thomson Locations: of Finland, Estonian, Finland, Estonia, HELSINKI, Baltic, Finnish, Inkoo, Paldiski, St Petersburg, NORD, Russia, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Lithuanian, Ukraine, United States, Latvian, Hamina, Oslo, Helsinki, Stockholm, Andrius Sytas, Vilnius, Gdansk, Copenhagen, London, Brussels
The president of Finland, Sauli Niinisto, is the person considered most responsible for bringing his country into the NATO alliance — and Sweden, too, which is awaiting ratification — following the Russian invasion of Ukraine. President Biden has consulted him about Russia and its president, Vladimir V. Putin, whom Mr. Niinisto has met numerous times. The war in Ukraine will last a long time, he said, and wars can take unexpected paths, even toward the use of nuclear weapons. The invasion, Mr. Niinisto said, was “a wake-up call” for Europe and NATO. That might be a good question — whether all Europeans realize that this is a European issue.”
Persons: Sauli, , Biden, Vladimir V, Putin, Niinisto, Organizations: NATO, Mr, Ukraine Locations: Finland, Sweden, Ukraine, Russia, Helsinki, Europe
"I don’t know for a fact what happened, but I’m not surprised," Biden told reporters. "There is not much that happens in Russia that Putin is not behind, but I don’t know enough to know the answer." Biden and CIA Director Williams Burns spoke separately last month of the potential danger to Prigozhin, although somewhat in jest. "But all kidding aside...I don't think any of us know for sure what the future of Prigozhin is in Russia." Speaking a week later at the Aspen Security Forum in July, CIA Director William Burns said: "I think Putin is someone who generally thinks that revenge is a dish best served cold ...
Persons: Joe Biden, Fumio Kishida, Yoon Suk, Camp David, Evelyn Hockstein, Yevgeny Prigozhin, Vladimir Putin, Prigozhin, I’m, Biden, Putin, Williams Burns, I’d, Sauli Niinisto, William Burns, Steve Holland, Humeyra Pamuk, Nandita Bose, Costas Pitas, Dan Whitcomb, Cynthia Osterman Organizations: Japanese, South, REUTERS, Reuters, Russia's, CIA, Finland's, Aspen Security Forum, Thomson Locations: Camp, Thurmont , Maryland, U.S, TAHOE , California, Moscow, Russia, Belarus
Mitch McConnell said fighting for the future of the GOP is the most important thing he's doing now. McConnell told Politico that he does not want to "redefine" what it means to be a Republican. McConnell told Politico that he views this fight over the GOP's future as the most important thing happening right now that he may still be able to influence. "There are those who are trying to redefine what a Republican is — I'm not in that group," McConnell told Politico's Jonathan Martin. According to Politico, McConnell privately told Finnish President Sauli Niinistö that Trump "redefined narcissism" during a meeting last year.
Persons: Mitch McConnell, McConnell, Trump, Donald Trump's, , Politico's Jonathan Martin, Martin, Ron DeSantis, Tucker Carlson, Sauli Niinistö, Elaine Chao Organizations: GOP, Politico, Republican, Service, Reagan, Ukraine, Trump, Trump , Florida Gov, Republican House, NATO Locations: Ukraine, Wall, Silicon, Trump , Florida, Finland, Sweden
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks as he holds a press conference with Finland's President Sauli Niinisto in Helsinki, Finland, July 13, 2023. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File PhotoSALT LAKE CITY, Aug 10 (Reuters) - U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday called China a "ticking time bomb" because of its economic challenges and said the country was in trouble because of weak growth. The United States, the world's largest economy, has fought high inflation and seen a robust labor market. "China is in trouble," Biden said on Thursday. Biden on Wednesday signed an executive order that will prohibit some new U.S. investment in China in sensitive technologies like computer chips.
Persons: Joe Biden, Sauli Niinisto, Kevin Lamarque, That’s, ” Biden, Biden's, Xi Jinping, Antony Blinken, Biden, Nandita Bose, Jeff Mason, Cynthia Osterman Organizations: Finland's, REUTERS, CITY, Wednesday, Thomson Locations: Helsinki, Finland, China, Utah, Beijing, United States
McConnell has fallen multiple times this year, sources say
  + stars: | 2023-07-27 | by ( Manu Raju | )   time to read: +3 min
CNN —Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell, who froze during a news conference Wednesday and earlier this year suffered a concussion after falling down, has also endured two other falls this year, according to multiple people familiar with the matter. And just this month at Reagan National Airport in Washington, McConnell was getting off the plane when he tripped and fell, a source familiar with this incident said. His falls have at times caused serious injuries, like in 2019, when McConnell fell at his Louisville home and fractured his shoulder. In October, McConnell told CNN he would definitely complete his term for the seat he’s held since 1985. But in May, after he suffered his concussion, McConnell declined to entertain the question about his plans to stay in his seat or run for leader.
Persons: Mitch McConnell, McConnell, Sauli Niinistö, hasn’t, Sanjay Gupta, CNN McConnell, ” McConnell, , I’m, Organizations: CNN, GOP, Senate, Reagan National Airport, Capitol, NBC, McConnell, Louisville Locations: Finland, Helsinki, Washington, Kentucky
Biden made light of the situation that Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin now finds himself in. "If I were he, I would be careful what I ate," Biden saidGet the inside scoop on today’s biggest stories in business, from Wall Street to Silicon Valley — delivered daily. I don't know, I don't think any of us know for certain what the future of Prigozhin is in Russia," he said. "So, I don't know how to answer that question beyond that." "There is no possibility of him winning the war in Ukraine," Biden said during the news conference in Helsinki alongside Finnish President Sauli Niinistö.
Persons: Biden, Wagner, Yevgeny Prigozhin, Prigozhin, Joe Biden, We're, Prigozhin's, Putin, it's, Prigozhin's Wagner, Sergei Shoigu's, Sauli Niinistö Organizations: Service, Kremlin, Prigozhin, Russia's Defence, NATO, Ukraine, Finnish Locations: Wall, Silicon, Russia, Ukraine, Vilnius, Lithuania, Helsinki
Helsinki, Finland CNN —More than 500 days after Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine, the war loomed over President Joe Biden’s weeklong, three-stop trip to Europe. Drama over Ukraine’s membershipUkraine was the top agenda item for NATO leaders in Vilnius, and the discussion of a pathway for the war-torn country to join the alliance prompted division among leaders. After meeting with Zelensky for more than an hour, Biden told reporters that he was able to reassure his Ukrainian counterpart. The former president raised the prospect of withdrawing from the alliance multiple times in 2018, The New York Times reported. I don’t think NATO’s ever been stronger,” Biden said during his meeting with Finland’s President Sauli Niinistö
Persons: Finland CNN —, Joe Biden’s weeklong, reasserting, Biden, Jens Stoltenberg, Ulf Kristersson, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Monday, Erdoğan, , Volodymyr Zelensky, Zelensky, Donald Trump’s, Trump’s, , ” Biden, Trump, Rishi Sunak, King Charles III, Putin, , Stoltenberg, Wang Wenbin, Biden “, “ I’ve, Sauli Niinistö Organizations: Finland CNN, Russia, NATO, Zelensky, Vilnius University, Nordic, Senate, The New York Times, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Ministry, Microsoft, House, Lithuania, State, Government Locations: Helsinki, Finland, Russia, Ukraine, Europe, Washington, Turkey, Sweden, Ankara, Vilnius, London, Finnish, China, Beijing, Asia, Indonesia, Hiroshima
Biden travelled to Finland, which shares a border with Russia, straight from this week's NATO talks in Vilnius, Lithuania to participate in a U.S.-Nordic summit with the leaders of Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland and Norway. He will also hold a joint news conference with Finland's President Sauli Niinisto before heading back to Washington. Ahead of a bilateral meeting with Niinisto, Biden hailed Finland's as an "incredible asset" to the NATO military alliance. Niinisto said Finland's NATO membership heralded "a new era in our security", and applauded Biden for "creating unity" at the Vilnius summit which focused on uniting behind Ukraine. At this week's NATO summit, Biden described Finland and Sweden's push to join NATO as evidence Putin's "craven lust for land and power" had backfired, only serving to strengthen the military alliance.
Persons: Joe Biden disembarks, Finland Sauli, Joe Biden, Vladimir Putin, Biden, Sauli Niinisto, Niinisto, Finland's, Tayyip Erdogan, craven, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Donald Trump, Putin, Steve Holland, Essi, Heather Timmons, Rosalba O'Brien, Emma Rumney Organizations: Air Force, United, Nordic, Summit, Read, NATO, Finland's, Russia, White, Ankara, White House, Thomson Locations: Helsinki, Vantaa, Finland, HELSINKI, Russia, Vilnius, Lithuania, U.S, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Washington, Soviet, Ukraine, Turkey
A $3.2 million fishing villa built for Vladimir Putin sits abandoned in Finland, The Insider reported. A friend built it for Putin, but stopped when he realized the leader wasn't keen on Finnish fishing, per The Insider. The villa was funded by Viktor Khmarin, an old classmate of Putin's at Leningrad State University who now lobbies for the Russian leader, per The Insider. Khmarin had built the Finnish cottage in a bid to get Putin to spend more time with him, according to the outlet. The reported location of Khmarin's fishing villa puts it close to the Villa Segren, another property in the Gulf of Finland that Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny claimed is used by Putin as a holiday retreat.
The Ukrainian president cited prior examples of battlefield successes that were followed by Ukraine being granted new types of military aid. I would rather it was the other way round, as it would be easier for us, but it is like it is, and we are grateful for everything," the Ukrainian president said. "But we like your aircraft, just so you know Mr President," Zelenskiy quipped. "We need security guarantees today, while we are not in NATO," Zelenskiy said. A spokesperson for Zelenskiy in a statement said the Ukrainian government expected the summit to result in a joint statement.
[1/2] South African President Cyril Ramaphosa responds to a parliamentary debate on his state of the nation address in Cape Town, South Africa, February 16, 2023. Only two days earlier, South Africa's parliament announced that it would abandon a seven-year-long legislative process to pull South Africa out of the ICC's Rome Statute. The process was abandoned because the governing party in December decided that South Africa should rather remain in the ICC and try to effect changes from within, a decision that has now been reversed. The international arrest warrant against Putin was issued after he had already received his invite from South Africa to the BRICS summit in August, and it would oblige South Africa to hand him over to the International Criminal Court in The Hague if he set foot in the country. "He has been invited by President Ramaphosa and Russia has indicated attendance," South Africa's official in charge of the relationship with BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) countries, Anil Sooklal, told Reuters.
A day after it joined NATO, Finland said it'll buy an advanced Israeli air-defense system. The Finnish Defense Ministry said it approved the purchase of the David's Sling system in a statement on Wednesday. Israeli defense company Rafael Advanced Defense Systems will deliver the system, which was procured in a deal valued at nearly $345 million, according to the statement. It will be the first export of the David's Sling system, according to a translation of the ministry's statement. David's Sling is an advanced air-defense system built by Rafael and the US firm Raytheon and has been operational since 2017.
Congratulating Finland, Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Finland now has a "reliable guarantee of safety – a collective guarantee." At the heart of NATO is the tenet that an attack on one member is an attack on all members. Finland and Sweden both applied to join NATO last May, prompted by Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and their membership bids were fast-tracked. To do so would have triggered NATO members' commitment to protect one another and Moscow would have faced the collective might of the alliance's armed forces. That's not to say that NATO didn't see the war coming in Ukraine in the run up to the invasion.
Finland's Foreign Affairs Minister Pekka Haavisto is concerned that his country's application to join NATO will be delayed. Finland on Tuesday became an official member of the military alliance NATO, prompted by Russian President Vladimir Putin's decision to invade Ukraine last year. Nor does it change the foundations or objectives of Finland's foreign and security policy," Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said in a written statement Tuesday. Finland shares an 832-mile border with Russia, the longest of any European Union member. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday that Russia would closely follow any NATO deployments in Finland and that his country would take "counter-measures" to this accession, according to Reuters.
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