According to the Foreign Minister, there are still several dozen people in Afghanistan who are subject to government decisions.
Foreign minister Pekka Haavisto (vihr) on Wednesday denied the basic Finns’ assessments that there would be a “thorn open” in relation to those to be helped from Afghanistan to Finland.
The situation in Afghanistan was discussed in Parliament on Wednesday after Haavisto had submitted a so-called Prime Minister’s statement to the situation in Afghanistan.
In his speech, Haavisto mentioned that there are still several dozen people in Afghanistan who are covered by Government decisions and their family members, as well as those covered by consular assistance, whom the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is trying to assist.
Haavisto also said that Finland also seeks to facilitate transactions related to family reunification of Afghans, for example with the help of rotating consuls and remote interpreting services.
Haavisto’s announcements raised questions in the group of basic Finns.
“Is the spike in these numbers now fully open, or what is the maximum number,” Mari Rantanen (ps) asked.
Also vice chairman of basic Finns Leena Meri asked Haavisto where the border goes with regard to Afghans helping Finland.
“There is no spike to be open, but the government has made these evacuation decisions. They had a beginning and they had an end. There are separate family reunification issues and then there are separate quota refugee issues. Each of these is decided separately and the figures are then known in connection with the decision, ”Haavisto replied.
Haavisto was shocked by the criticism of family reunification from basic Finns and reminded that family reunification is based on Finnish law enacted by Parliament.
According to Haavisto, there is a need to facilitate family reunification, as due to the corona pandemic and the situation in Afghanistan, it has been difficult to submit family reunification applications to the Finnish mission in New Delhi, India.
“If the government now facilitates this by trying to get consuls traveling to Tehran or Islamabad, for example, so that the normal rights of these people can be realized, then there is nothing wrong with that in my opinion. If Parliament thinks so, then the laws must be changed in this respect, ”Haavisto said.
“Of course, we strive to arrange so that the services also work normally in family reunification cases, and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs is responsible for that,” Haavisto continued.
Minister of the Interior Maria Ohisalo (Green) emphasized that the number of people coming to Finland through family reunification depends on the number of family reunification applications.
“Then there is the quota refugee system separately, and the government is committed to increasing the reception of quota refugees from the direction of Afghanistan,” Ohisalo said.