an escalating standoff between Finland and Russia
Finland is closing all but one of its eight land border crossings with Russia over tensions related to an influx of migrants that Finnish officials blame Moscow for. Last week, Finland closed four of the entry points.
“Russia has sought for years to cause discord, to shake unity in Europe and to weaken the Western alliance and international rules-based order,” the Finnish prime minister, Petteri Orpo, told Parliament. He had previously said the border situation was deteriorating amid signs that the Russian authorities were helping asylum seekers travel toward Finland.
Finland, concerned that it could one day become a target of Russian aggression, joined NATO earlier this year, becoming the 31st member of the military alliance and in the process angering Moscow.
Background: The border dispute is the latest sign of erosion in the relationship between Finland and Russia, which share an 830-mile border. Their ties have deteriorated since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year.