Finland’s prime minister has used a New Year’s address to demand citizens refrain from “disseminating hate speech” in the wake of investigations into a foreign rape gang preying on young girls.
Juha Sipilä referred to recent events in Oulu, where police have identified 10 foreign suspects in connection with cases involving grooming, sexual abuse, and violence against children as young as ten as he warned Finns not to “stir up hatred” against migrants.
While acknowledging the incidents had “provoked shock and anger” across the country, the prime minister insisted “it should be emphasised that the suspected crimes were committed by individuals, not by population groups”.
“I call for these events not to be used in anger against refugees or people of foreign origin,” Sipilä said in his speech on Monday, telling citizens: “Let me point out that vigilante justice is a crime in the eyes of the law, as is disseminating hate speech.”
Finland: Crackdown on Criminal Migrants After Children Gang Raped https://t.co/ue9yeTuj7G
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) December 7, 2018
“Persons found guilty of crimes will be held accountable for their actions in accordance with the rule of law,” stated the Centre Party leader, underscoring the government’s recent vow to get tough on foreign criminals as he added that “serious offences will negatively affect [a third world migrant’s chances] of obtaining a permanent residence permit.”
Breitbart London reported last month on plans being considered by Finnish lawmakers which would revoke citizenship from foreign nationals who have been convicted of crimes related to terrorism or treason.
After the scandal in Oulu became known, in which the suspects either entered Finland as illegal immigrants or were shipped into the country through various refugee quota schemes, interior minister Kai Mykkänen urged lawmakers to extend the bill so that sanctions would also apply to individuals found guilty of serious sexual crimes.
Police in the northwestern city and municipality have pointed to a large rise in the number of asylum seekers since 2015 as a major contributor to an increase in sexual violence, while official statistics from 2017 revealed that — nationally — Iraqi and Afghan migrants were overrepresented by up to 40 times amongst sexual assault suspects compared to native Finns.