Foreign Minister: Hong Kong extradition treaty should not be applied
Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto (Green) says that an extradition treaty between Finland and China “should not be applied” any longer because it means that suspects would be handed over to China – where they could potentially face a death sentence – instead of being dealt with in Hong Kong, as the treaty originally intended. The Chinese implemented new restrictive security laws in the territory at the end of June which have been criticised by human rights groups and a number of countries. Haavisto made the comments in Brussels after a Monday meeting with other EU foreign ministers and although nobody has been extradited to Hong Kong under the terms of the treaty, the foreign minister says the realities of the Chinese legal system, like closed-door trials and capital punishment, is something Finnish officials would take into account when deciding on any extradition requests in the future.
Timber sales slump – but not due to coronavirus
The Finnish Forestry Industries Association reports a drop in sales of timber from January to June this year, but unlike other sectors of the economy the main reason is not related to the coronavirus pandemic. There was an average 22% reduction in the volume of wood bought by association member companies from private forests. The purchase of pulmwood was 20% down, and the purchase of logs, by volume, was down 25% compared with the five year average. The Forestry Industry Association says that it was due to ongoing industrial action in the sector.
NBA star Lauri Markkanen not available for upcoming Susijengi games
Finnish basketball star Lauri Markkanen will not be available for games against Estonia in a few week’s time. Although Markkanen’s NBA season is over for now, and might not start again until the end of 2020, the Chicago Bulls player will be heading back to the USA at the end of July to train with the rest of his team mates. Finland meanwhile is still chasing a 2021 European Championship spot and has warm-up games on 29th and 30th July against Estonia. The Finns have a good chance in the four-team Group E where hosts Georgia go through automatically, while two other teams either Finland, Switzerland or Serbia, will also qualify for the finals.
Tuesday morning weather
It’s a bright start to Tuesday morning in southern areas, a real change from overnight rain and thunder storms which have moved away for the time being. Temperatures this morning range from +11°C in Central Finland to +13°C in Inari and up to +16°C in Turku and Åland in the southwest, and Hanko on the south coast. Later today however, expect more rain and thunder storms to move in to many areas – especially in the far north and the south of the country.