YLE News

Some YLE News stories are posted on BarentsObserver as part of Eye on the Arctic, a collaborative partnership between public and private circumpolar media organizations.

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The head of Finland’s Sámi Parliament told a United Nations gathering in New York that the Finnish government has robbed her people of their right to define themselves by failing to sign up to an international convention on indigenous people’s rights.

Support for Finland joining Nato is far higher among members of the Finnish Reservists’ Association than in the rest of the country.

Finland will not be ratifying the International Labour Organisation’s “Convention No. 169″, which vouchsafes the rights of indigenous peoples, until the next government is formed.

Weighing in on EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker’s idea of a European Union military force, Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja said he sees it as an unrealistic venture at present, but is glad the issue is being aired.

This February the hotels of Rovaniemi, Lapland have been full to the brim with customers. Usually this many people stay in hotels in the northern city only during the Christmas season, but this year the tourist boom will continue into March at least.

Some 75,500 accommodation nights for Russians were registered in the past December.

The economic crisis in Russia has affected Finland in many ways already, now in the form of new cabin purchases coming to an almost complete halt, according to real estate agents.

Bankrupt mining firm Talvivaara Sotkamo might need another bailout from the government.

The United States is seeking a closer partnership with Finland through the Arctic Council, which brings together countries on or near the Arctic.

Russia is stepping up its military activity in the Arctic region. As part of this effort, Russian Armed Forces reopened an abandoned military base on the Kola Peninsula in the Russia city of Alakurtti recently, just 60 kilometres from the Finnish border.