Jeskanen has previously worked as an assistant to Helsingin Sanomat in St. Petersburg.
Helsingin Sanomat foreign supplier Jenni Jeskanen has been selected as the next Moscow correspondent of HS. Thanks to Jeskanen, Helsingin Sanomat will continue to have eyes on Russia in the eastern neighbor’s capital.
In 2017–2020, Jeskanen worked as HS’s assistant in St. Petersburg, when he lived in St. Petersburg and reported to Helsingin Sanomat, especially on events in the St. Petersburg-Finland border region. Since then, he has been following Russia and its surrounding areas from the Helsinki delivery.
In addition to Helsingin Sanomat, Jeskanen has news experience from Yleisradio, Taloussanomat, Savon Sanomat and Karjalan Sanomat.
Jeskanen has a master’s degree in philosophy, majoring in Russian language and culture. In addition, he has a Master of Public Health.
Jeskanen will take up the post in early October as the current correspondent Jussi Niemeläinen will return to Finland at the end of his term.
Jeskanen moves to Moscow at a time that in many ways cannot be considered bright. Russia arrested and imprisoned its best-known opposition politician Alexei Navalnyin, and relations with the West are tightening.
“Navalnyi is behind bars and anyway, attempts have been made to clean up the opposition out of sight and out of mind. It is important to follow the struggle between the increasingly authoritarian regime and the opposition, ”says Jeskanen.
“There is, of course, a struggle between conservative and liberal values. City versus countryside, the status of women, a new worldview for young people, ”she lists.
In Russia presidential elections are scheduled for 2024. President Vladimir Putin the constitutional reform he has run will ensure that he can continue to run if he so wishes.
Jeskanen is such an experienced successor to Russia that he does not want to predict whether candidacy is the way Putin will choose to secure the future of himself and his neighbors.
“Events in Russia always surprise in some way,” says Jeskanen. “It is often thought that something certain cannot happen, but in Russia it is possible.”
One well-known example of this is, of course, the collapse of the Soviet Union, which will mark 30 years this year and which surprised the Followers of the news of its time in Finland and the West quite completely.
“St. Petersburgers are crazy about Finland and love Finland, but fewer Finns go on holiday to St. Petersburg.”
Jeskanen is aware that the Finnish public receives information about Russia mainly through the news and that that news is very often negative. There are fewer normal contacts between people than, say, a western neighbor to Sweden, and Russian pop culture, for example, is hardly followed or known.
Jeskanen hopes that he could add tones, culture and everyday life to the Finnish image of Russia.
“Russia’s development and the arrests of the opposition, for example, are really worrying, but that is not the whole picture either.”
As before As a St. Petersburger, Jeskanen does not intend to forget the part of Russia that is closest to Finland. Finland is known there.
“St. Petersburgers are crazy about Finland and love Finland, but fewer Finns go on holiday to St. Petersburg. The mental distance is great. ”
Helsingin Sanomat has had a correspondent in Moscow since 1975. In Jeskanen’s opinion, presence in journalism is always important, and it is especially important in Russia, where some readers still have their first trip yet.