Morning headlines: Wednesday 8th July 2020

News Now Finland morning news headlines and weather first, every weekday at 09:00.

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Government hold talks on opening the borders

Government ministers are meeting at House of the Estates in Helsinki today to discuss the possibilities of further relaxing the country’s border controls. Finnish authorities have previously said that countries which could show a level of eight coronavirus cases per 100,000 population over the last two weeks could be added to a list of passengers who can come to Finland for any reason, and not have to self-isolate on arrival. So far this special situation only applies to visitors from Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. It is likely that countries such as Germany, Italy, Ireland, Malta and Greece would fit the criteria, but neighbours Russia and Sweden are less likely to make the cut this time.

Defence Minister says ‘Russia kill bounties’ haven’t affected Finnish troops

Finland’s Minister of Defence Antti Kaikkonen (SDP) says that reports Russia paid financial bounties to the Taliban to kill coalition troops in Afghanistan haven’t had an affect on the 60 Finnish military personnel deployed there. In an interview with STT News Agency, Kaikkonen said the allegations about the bounties were serious, but he didn’t know if they were true or not. He also said that Finland had not raised the issue with the Russians either, and that there has been no change in the threat level to the Finnish forces working to advise local authorities in northern Afghanistan.

Poll: Most Finns think coronavirus crisis strengthens importance of science

A new poll finds that most Finns – 61% – believe the importance of science and experts has increased during the coronavirus crisis. The survey was carried out by Sitra and also finds that 54% of people think tensions between social groups about economic and social issues are increasing. The poll also asked questions about trust in different institutions and found that confidence in parliament has grown during the coronavirus spring crisis, as has trust in the President. The survey was conducted by TNS Kantar from 29th April to 8th May and more than 3,800 people were questioned.

Wednesday morning weather

It’s a mild, but not hot, start to Wednesday morning across most of the country where temperatures range from +13°C in central areas to +16°C and sunshine down the west coast and into inland areas around Tampere, and +14°C on the eastern border. There is some rain forecast around Turku in the southwest and Inari in the northeast and temperatures stick stubbornly in single digits around Kilpisjärvi in northwest Lapland again on Wednesday morning.

 

Finnish Meteorological Institute Forecast for Wednesday morning 8th July 2020 / Credit: FMI