A series of sexual attacks against teenage and even preteen schoolgirls, with the suspected involvement by migrants from the Middle East, has shaken Finland, prompting condemnation from top-ranking politicians including Prime Minister Juha Sipilä and President Sauli Niinistö.
A group of eight immigrants suspected of brutally raping and sexually assaulting schoolgirls over a prolonged period of time have been arrested in the Finnish town of Oulu. According to the police all the men came to Finland as asylum seekers or refugees, some from the Middle East, national broadcaster Yle reported.
The alleged abusers are aged 18-40, whereas their victims were all aged under 15, with the youngest only 10 years of age. At least some of those detained have already received Finnish citizenship.
Just as in other Scandinavian nations (Sweden, Denmark and Norway), Finland as well has seen a rise of populist, nationalist parties in recent years. One of their prominent figures is MP Ms Laura Huhtasaari, who couldn’t look more Finnish if you tried.
Over the weekend, Ms Huhtasaari said she was astonished when someone sent her a poster of a school project which has been done in a class on the topic of immigration.
More Iraqi asylum seekers are marrying Finnish citizens in an attempt to obtain legal grounds to stay in the Nordic country, the Finnish Immigration Service Migri said, citing marriages of convenience as the most frequent reason for rejection.
Many Finns remain somewhat uncomfortable with Islam, suggests a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center.
Almost two-thirds (62%) of Finns revealed they believe Islam is fundamentally incompatible with the culture and values in Finland. Over a quarter (28%), meanwhile, indicated that they would not accept a Muslim as a family member and 14 per cent that they would not accept a Muslim as a neighbour.
Traditional Britain Group, a British ultra-conservative organization, has expressed outrage over a “Finnish primary school sex education book” allegedly being distributed by a Finnish youth group, Hivpoint. The organisation shared an image on their social media network along with a text description of the brochure, which was taken from the “Just Wear It in Sex” Finnish brochure.
A total of 1052 asylum seekers were suspected of crimes in 2016 and virtually all were men, who together represented 29 nations. Two thirds were Iraqis and the age of the suspects was evenly distributed.
According to the release, a study conducted by the college based on the database on asylum seekers recorded in 2016 by the police information system found that the most common crimes committed by asylum seekers tend to involve assaults and intimidation at reception centres.
The next most common crimes committed by asylum seekers were property offences, sexual offences, and offences against reception centres and their staff.
But what about the curious incident of the goat in the night?
In a case that has triggered public outrage, a top Finnish court has upheld a ruling that sex between an asylum seeker and a 10-year-old girl didn’t constitute rape. Critics are calling for harsher sentences for child abuse.
Finland’s Supreme Court rejected a request from the prosecution to appeal a three-year jail term for a 23-year-old man on Thursday. Finnish media identify him as Juusuf Muhamed Abbudin, an asylum seeker, but don’t reveal his country of origin.