Ville Niinistö announces Euro Parliament bid

The former environment minister hopes to win a seat in the European Parliament during May's elections.

File picture of Ville Niinistö (Green) / Credit: Vihreät

Green party member of parliament Ville Niinistö has announced that he’s running for a seat in the European Parliament elections this coming May.

Niinistö also said he’s available to be Finland’s EU commissioner-

“I have decided to stand as a candidates in the European elections. Now is the moment when both Finland and Europe need the courage to defend climate, education, democracy and humanity. This is a common task for all of us who want to build and not break up. I’m in” Niinistö wrote on Twitter.

In his statement, Niinistö says there is more urgency for climate protection, and that’s somewhere the European Parliament can play a major role. He also says that European Greens asked him to become a candidate, due to his previous job as Finland’s environment minister.

It came as no surprise that Niinistö decided to run for the European Parliament. He had previously said he would drop out from the national parliament at this spring’s general election; he also didn’t make a play to be the Green party leader when Touko Aalto left the job for health reasons in late autumn.

Niinistö’s candidature was greeted by party leader Pekka Haavisto.

“As Chairman of the Greens I am extremely pleased about Ville’s decision to stand in the European elections. I look forward to a good election results for the Green party across Europe” says Haavisto.

Finland’s EU Commissioner

Ville Niinistö also said today that he would be available to be Finland’s EU commissioner.

This would upset convention, since usually that role is selected by the country’s biggest political party.

The job is held for the next few months by ex-Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen, and Niinistö said today he wanted to shake up the way Finland chooses the person for that role in the future.