August 20, 2021
From Takku (Finland)
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[Varis-verkosto]

Vilhelm Junnila, a Finns Party MP, speaking at the “188 Kukkavirta” demonstration in 2019. Posing on the opposite river bank there are members of the Nordic Resistance Movement and Soldiers of Odin, offering a context to how the relationship between the Finns Party and the rest of the far-right has developed.

In this article Varis Turku will showcase the connections between the Finns Party (Perussuomalaiset) and the far-right in Turku and Southwest Finland (Varsinais-Suomi, Finland Proper). The article can be read as a local example of how the Finns Party has furthered and normalized racism and fascism in Finland, especially during the chairmanship of Jussi Halla-aho. The article was previously published in Finnish.

During the last few years a lot has been written about the Finns Party developing into a far-right party, as well as about the party’s relationship to other far-right movements. The Finns’ connections to the far-right milieu have caused conflicts and public uproar time and time again. These kind of incidents have been, for example, publicly speaking at Nazi demonstrations and participating in a Nazi “summer camp” that included shooting exercises. Already in 2015 it was obvious that the youth organisation, Finns Party youth (Perussuomalaiset nuoret), had become more radicalized. Some time later the so called “ethnonationalist wing” of the youth organisation got the upper hand and gained even more influence and visibility, but also caused problems and unwanted visibility for the Finns Party leadership.

From one scandal and conflict to another

In February 2020 the second vice chairman of the now defunct Finns Party youth organisation, Toni Jalonen, participated in an Estonian fascist conference called Etnofutur. During his speech at the conference Jalonen declared himself a fascist, causing a major conflict between the youth organisation and the party itself. Around the same time period the Finns Party was under lots of external pressure, with the youth organisations from eight parties declining co-operation with the Finns Party youth until the organisation would denounce fascism and ethnonationalism (some of the other youth organisations have also declined co-operation with the new youth organisation).

The indiscipline of the ethnonationalist wing led to abolishing of the original Finns Party youth organisation in the Spring of 2020. The conflict between the party and the youth organisation was basically a power struggle about keeping the internal hierarchy within the Finns Party intact, since there was and still isn®t any major difference in the political views of the party leadership and ethnonationalists in the youth organisation. The party leadership, including chairman Jussi Halla-aho, are proponents of the far-right conspiracy theory called the Great Replacement. Despite this, the ethnonationalists in the youth organisation weren’t too keen on the euphemisms used by Halla-aho, and instead they demanded a hard line against “the dangers of race mixing” among other things.

The number of connections the Finns Party has with other far-right groups differs locally, but the party has at times also gotten into direct conflicts with fascists. In July of 2020 there was an attempted murder in JĂ€msĂ€, Central Finland, when local Finns Party board member Pekka Kataja was brutally assaulted in his home and hospitalised. Among the suspects was Teemu Torssonen, a local politician who was kicked out of the Finns Party by Kataja due to his fanatic views, bad behaviour and harrassment even towards other members of the party. Another suspect in Kataja’s attempted murder was Tero Ala-Tuuhonen, who at the time of his arrest was the chairman of a far-right group Kansallismielisten Liittouma (Nationalist Alliance), but was quickly replaced by Terhi Kiemunki once the incident became public. Ala-Tuuhonen is no longer a suspect in the investigation, but his acquaintance, an Uusimaa resident born 1979 who described himself a follower of Halla-Aho, is still a suspect. The case hasn’t had its closure yet and is still processed by the courts. The incident in JĂ€msĂ€ is a telling example of the infighting within the far-right, but also about their co-operation, capacity and readiness to use violence. With the 2021 municipal elections now behind us, it is now a good time to take a look into what kind of connections the Finns Party has to other far-right groups.

The relationship between the far-right and the Finns Party in Southwest Finland

The strong relationship the Finns Party in Southwest Finland has with other far-right groups is a good local example of a larger phenomenon. A few local politicians who have gotten a warning or have been kicked out doesn’t change the fact that their right-wing populist and racist politics practiced for years has created a platform for fascists in the Finns Party. During the last couple of years in Southwest Finland this has been especially visible at fascist events such as the “188-Kukkavirta” demonstration and before that in several “Close the borders” demonstrations. During the last few years other events have also been organized by the far-right in the Turku area, such as the “Awakening” conference, “Aamunkoitto” event as well as several Nazi gigs. In 2019, Suomen Sisu, the oldest active fascist organisation in Finland, held their congress in Turku, where Henri HautamĂ€ki, a local politicians of Finns Party, was elected as chairman. 

Below is a list of how the fascism is localized in Turku, how the far-right groups organize and build networks locally, nationally and some even internationally. In this article the role of Suomen Sisu as an far-right influencer is brought out more than the connections between the Finns Party and the now banned Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM/PVL).

The Finns Party in Turku area

Racism and fascism has been visible in Turku local politics even before the Finns Party made their big entrance on the political arena in the 2010s, but before that the far-right parties were small (Vapauspuolue, Suomen Kansan Sinivalkoiset, Suomidemokraatit) or represented by individuals like Olavi MĂ€enpÀÀ and the “reichsfĂŒhrer” Pekka Siitoin. In the municipal elections in 2021 the Finns Party got 13,1% of the votes in Turku, becoming the 5th largest party, but in the parliamentary elections in 2019 the party got the most votes with tight margin, getting 19,1% of votes in Southwest Finland. In Turku the Finns Party got 15,7% of the votes in the parliamentary elections. The Finns Party in general has racist and right wing policies, but the party’s local group in Southwest Finland has several MPs who have made a name for themselves with especially blatant racism.

Ville Tavio

Tavio was born in Lappeenranta and studied law at the University of Turku. After graduating in 2012 he became active in politics and joined the Finns Party. Today he is a member of parliament for the Finns Party, the chairman of their parliamentary group and a member of the committee of Foreign Affairs in the Finnish parliament. Tavio is also a member of the board of directors at Veikkaus Oy and a member of the Turku city council. He is a Trump supporter and spreads populist conspiracy theories on Twitter, claiming that “leftists and greens” are censoring social media.

Ville Tavio

Tavio was born in Lappeenranta and studied law at the University of Turku. After graduating in 2012 he became active in politics and joined the Finns Party. Today he is a member of parliament for the Finns Party, the chairman of their parliamentary group and a member of the committee of Foreign Affairs in the Finnish parliament. Tavio is also a member of the board of directors at Veikkaus Oy and a member of the Turku city council. He is a Trump supporter and spreads populist conspiracy theories on Twitter, claiming that “leftists and greens” are censoring social media.

Tavio has a lot going on and that might be why his spokesman on the far-right Hommaforum is his parliamentary assistant Tuomas TĂ€hti. Tavio has his own thread on Hommaforum that he started himself and TĂ€hti now manages.

In 2018, Tavio wanted to limit the “social media stalking” of the police and questioned the legal grounds for the term hate speech. Although Tavio has profiled himself as a hardliner, he is mainly a political opportunist who changes his mind quickly if needed and has given some very contradictory comments to the press. After the attempted murder of Pekka Kataja, Tavio claimed to be unaware of the Nazi group Soldiers of Odin (“– I don’t know much about this organization, I don’t know whether it’s still an active organization”), but a few days later he was actively defending the organization and their “freedom of speech” on Twitter.

Kansan Uutiset wrote that in July, Tavio was one of the first to claim that Katajas® assaulters were “foreigners”, but quickly deleted his tweet after it turned out the suspects taken into custody were indeed white far-right activists. Tavio has also said that he is unfamiliar with the Kansallismielisten Liittouma (Nationalist Alliance) coalition, even though he and European parliament MP Laura Huhtasaari inquired the Finnish parliament in October 2018 about “the global mass immigration deal”, based on an petition started by Kansallismielisten Liittouma.

Ville Tavio and Toni Jalonen at a county fair in 2019. In February 2020 Jalonen declared himself a fascist and in the following conflict the  Finns Party youth organization was abolished. Jalonen is wearing a shirt from the fascist online magazine Sarastus.

Tuomas TĂ€hti

Tuomas TĂ€hti made the headlines in 2017, after getting blackout drunk at a Christmas party and being rushed to the hospital.

Tuomas TĂ€hti, a Finns Party politician and graduate engineer from Turku, previously chairman and vice chairman of the Finns Party local group in Turku, now campaign manager and parliamentary assistant to Ville Tavio since 2015. TĂ€hti is also the operations inspector for the Finns Party Espoo group in 2020 and was also the operations inspector for the Finns Party youth in Uusimaa from 2018 to 2020. He has also written a self published book, Nationalistin henkinen horisontti (“The mental horizon of a nationalist”) in 2019, in which he, among other things, spreads conspiracy theories of “the Great Replacement” and boasts about meetings with national socialists and Suomen Sisu. In 2018 TĂ€hti told Iltalehti about his plans to attend the fascist  “Awakening” conference in Helsinki.

TÀhti supported Henri HautamÀki, the current chairman of Suomen Sisu, when HautamÀki was a candidate for a member of the board of the Finns Party youth in 2015. On his website TÀhti has interviewed many far-right activists in an admiring tone. TÀhti currently resides in Espoo and was a candidate in the 2021 municipal election (67 votes).

Henri HautamÀki

Henri HautamĂ€ki is a Finns Party politician and a vice member of the Turku city Youth Committee, a member of the council of multi-culture and a member of the Turku Student Village Foundation (TYS) delegation. HautamĂ€ki’s most prominent political role at the moment is as chairman of Suomen Sisu, a position he was elected to in November 2019. In his campaign video HautamĂ€ki said that he would like to be “the tough face of the organization, who selflessly works for the nationalist cause uncaring about the pressure put on by society.” In the same year Suomen Sisu elected known misogynist and pseudointellectual Timo HĂ€nnikĂ€inen as their second vice chairman.

Toni Jalonen rejoicing on behalf of his good friend HautamÀki after the latter was elected chairman of Suomen SisuHautamÀki posing with an AR-10 rifle. The picture was published on 31st of May 2020 on the Suomen Sisu Twitter account.

HautamĂ€ki glorifies weapons and war and in his own words “supports militarism”. He has often posted pictures of himself with guns on social media; real guns, a museum pieces and air soft rifles. He actively follows ongoing armed conflicts and has also commented on the war in Eastern Ukraine, siding with the Ukrainians.

Finns Party members of Suomen Sisu and neo-Nazis from the NRM at the grave of the Fennoman activist and assassin Eugen Schauman in Porvoo 2015

Henri HautamĂ€ki and Suomen Sisu at Schaumans’ grave in 2020 like his predecessor Olli Immonen in 2015. Already being a MP at the time, Immonens’ posing with NRM activists caused an uproar in 2015, when the connections between the Finns Party, Suomen Sisu and the NRM concretized in a group photo. In the 2020 picture with HautamĂ€ki are Toni Jalonen and Kristian Viding among others.

So called “honorary visits” have become a tradition for Suomen Sisu. Their Uusimaa district chairman Kristian Viding, who is a member of Kokoomus (The National Coalition Party), commented on the previous uproars in his speech in 2020. For the Finnish far-right the political assassination of governor Nikolai Bobrikov in 1904 is an example of the sacrifices of a radical nationalist for independence and idolizing Schauman is important to them. In today’s Finland, the narrative has also been challenged and many – including Schauman’s relative, politician Ida Schauman – have criticized the far-right for idolizing him.

Suomen Sisu visited Schaumans grave also in 2019. On the same day the then temporarily outlawed NRM visited the grave under the name Kohti Vapautta. On the Kohti Vapautta web page they posted a picture of a wreath laid by Suomen Sisu, though group photos with both groups have not been taken since 2015. 

Henri HautamĂ€ki was supposed to be a speaker at the “Awakening” conference in October 2020. The theme of the conference was Nova Europa (“A New Europe”), but due to the COVID-19 pandemic the conference was postponed indefinitely. One of the main organizers of the event is Tuukka Kuru, which we have mentioned earlier. HautamĂ€ki’s and Kuru’s ideologies are very similar and they have worked together a lot over the years in Suomen Sisu and in other projects. Here is an excerpt from an interview by Kuru with HautamĂ€ki in 2019:

Kuru: In Addition to Sisu you are also actively involved in the Finns Party and its youth organization. How would you describe the relations between these three organizations and how do you think they should be developed in the future? Which one of these organizations do you think is the most important in order to achieve a societal change?

HautamĂ€ki: Nominally Suomen Sisu affects the other two organizations mentioned for example by lobbying in them, but the two don’t affect Suomen Sisu in the same way. This is however not completely true, but all relations are reciprocal, in which case the emphasis of the individuals who belong to multiple organizations might in differ in which side they prefer. The activities of Suomen Sisu regarding the Finns Party has been based mostly in the successful attempt to get members of Sisu elected as MPs from the Finns Party lists. This is a good strategy in itself, but it cannot be the organizations only way of influence and not necessarily even the main way.

The relations with the Finns Party and Finns Party youth are worth keeping good, but one must bare in mind that Sisu is not committed to any political party and that putting all of the effort to the same organizations in not necessarily politically sustainable. In the short run I see the Finns Party taking the biggest role in striving for change, but in the long run I see Sisus role as the most significant.

HautamĂ€ki’s racism, glorification of war, weapons and political assassinations in addition to his memberships in both the Finns Party and Suomen Sisu are just some examples of how far-right ideology, rhetoric and visual communication have increased in Finland during the last years. Like in the USA, antifascists in Finland have also warned about the consequenses of allowing space to fascists . Though the Finns Party claims to be committed to acting parliamentarily and peacefully, many of their members are still involved in fascist organizations like Suomen Sisu.

In the summer of 2020 HautamĂ€ki published a racist manifesto on the Suomen Sisu web page titled “From the chairman: Total culture war”, in which he defends “the white western culture”. The belligerent headline of the text as well as its contents were written in an aggressive manner and it’s not unclear what the purpose of the text is. He writes:

Since nothing short of destruction of the former order is enough for the BLM-movement and the (cultural) marxists exploiting them, it inevitably poses a threat to our way of life and it should not be tolerated for even a moment.

At the same time HautamÀki demands anti-democratic measures, such as banning free science, purges in education and deportations:

The universities and the school system must be purged of the un-national influence, the media must be put to service the national cause and modes of operations of state institutes must be upgraded. After this the next step is to rectify the previous social hierarchies, to build new ones and to dismantle the multi-cultural development and move on from integration to sending them back.

HautamĂ€ki’s text came after the Black Lives Matter movement had reached Finland, where thousands of black, brown and white (especially young people) demonstrated against the police violence aimed at black people and at the same time also against racism in Finland. It is noteworthy that according to studies, Finland was the most racist country against black people in 2018. HautamĂ€ki’s role as the chairman of Suomen Sisu and a Finns Party politician should not be underestimated since he directly calls for a “cultural war”.

HautamĂ€ki works out at the Big Boy Barbell Club gym in ItĂ€harju, Turku and is employed as a care assistant at KTO, Toimintakeskus Apaja in Saippua Center, Turku. What is the employer’s attitude towards HautamĂ€ki as an organized far right leader, his interest in weapons and his ideological world view? 

Apaja toimintakeskus

Artturinkatu 2 E 41, 20200 Turku 

apaja@kto-vs.fi

(Lassi) Vilhelm Junnila

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ECTyVikWsAAhNxQ-768x414.jpgVilhelm Junnila as a speaker at the far right “188 Kukkavirta” demonstration in Turku 2019, which was attended by the nationalist alliance that consisted of PVL, SOO and by individuals from the far right environment in Finland. Behind him in the photo are members of the SOO and the NRM.

Vilhelm Junnila is a first time MP, the Chairman of the Finnish delegation of the OSCE (the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) Parliamentary Assembly and a member of the Financial Committee. Junnila is also a member of the City Council of Naantali. Junnila is also the Chairman of Naantali Travel Oy’s Board since 2017 and a member of the Board of Directors of the Naantali Music Foundation since 2018. 

In 2015, Vilhelm Junnila’s election campaign featured Sweden Democrat Kent Ekeroth, known for the “iron pipe scandal” in Stockholm in 2010, when he and the other two other drunk Sweden democrats were filmed threatening the Kurdish comedian Soran Ismail with iron pipes. 

Junnila was a speaker at the 2019 fascist “Kukkavirta” -protest and commented afterwards that he was “present only as a invited guest speaker and had nothing to do with the organizers.” The chairman of the Finns Party, Jussi Halla-Aho, told STT that he sanctioned this:

– MP Junnila is there mainly representing himself. In my opinion, it is quite sad that the city of Turku or the state in no way want to note the memorial day of the victims of Islamic terrorism. In that sense, I see it as good that Junnila speaks there.

However, the claims of Halla-Aho and Junnila are dishonest, considering how often the party activists co-operate with the far-right. The “ignorance” of the Finns Party and the indifference with the fascists began with Timo Soini‘s chairmanship and the process has accelerated with the chairmanship of Halla-Aho after 2017. Since 2017, Halla-Aho has allowed the actions of racists and fascists in the party more and more openly, although sometimes reacting when there are conflicts of interest such as with the ethnonationalist wing of the party’s youth organization. 

It should be remembered that Halla-Aho’s “Scripta” blog was to that extent famous in far-right environments ten years ago that Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik referred to it in his manifesto. Junnila is of course aware of, like all MPs and politicians, that the appearance in a political event is not a private matter and that a MP is considered a representative of their party . Instead, this legitimizes the dangerous fascist movement and their networking. 

In 2018, the speaker was the district chairman of Suomen Sisu’s Central Ostrobothnia section (and subsequently Finns Party MP and vice chairman) Mauri Peltokangas. In 2018 and 2019 the speakers were prominent Finns Party politicians which gave a lot of legitimacy and visibility to the far-right event. In 2020, the Finns Party was not visibly involved in the 188 -demonstration, but instead organized a memorial event of their won, with only 20 persons participating. 

Ritva “Kike” Elomaa 

Kike Elomaa is a nurse, a bodybuilder and a singer who has been a MP of the Finns Party from Southwest Finland since 2011. In 2003, the Turku Court of Appeal charged Elomaa to a fine of 1,140 euros for economic crimes related to Kimmo Elomaa (now deceased), her husband. 

Kike Elomaa and (Chairman of the Turku Finns Association) Jyrki Åland participated in the fascist “188” demonstration in 2018, when PVL was visibly involved, but claimed that she did not know the organizer. When in September 2020 it turned out that organizers Tero Ala-Tuhonen and Teemu Torssonen were jailed supspected for the Pekka Kataja assault, Elomaa was forced to distance herself and claimed to the media that she had been at the demonstration only by chance in 2018. 

It is typical for Elomaa to argue that she does not really know in what company she moves or what her close circle does. In the earlier court case, she argued that she was unaware of her husband’s financial crimes and his membership in the outlaw club Cannonball MC. 

Finns party members Jarmo Lindqvist (left), Kike Elomaa and Jyrki Åland in 2018 at the Nazi march in Turku. Organizers of the fascist march “188” was the Nordic Resistance Movement and other Nazis from Finland and Sweden. 

Jyrki Åland 

Jyrki Åland is a the chairman of the Finns party in Turku and made headlines earlier in 2021, when he said that “a Covid-19 cleansing would be good” in the Varissuo suburb. Due to the bad publicity, Åland did not apply for a second term as district chairman for the Finns party in Southwest Finland, but he is still the chairman of the Turku local chapter.

Åland has profiled himself as anti-muslim particulary after the tragic Turku knife attack in 2017, and has after that participated in the far-right “188”-demonstrations in 2018 and 2019. The demonstrations have featured members from (the now outlawed) Nordic Resistance Movement, Soldiers of Odin and Finnish Defense League. The Finns was the only political party that did not protest the tragedy being turned into a yearly far-right rally.

Turku, April 19th, 2019. Jyrki Åland (right) posing with a flag belonging to the far-right Italian Lega party. Formerly known by the Lega Nord name, the party has become famous for racism, spreading disinformation and co-operating with American far-right ideologue Steve Bannon.

Åland showing the “ok” hand sign at the 188 Kukkavirta demonstration in 2018. The traditional hand sign has been claimed by the alt-right movement during the last years, with the meaning WP – “white power”.

Linus Linsén

Linus Linsén (center) carrying a banner at the Kukkavirta demonstration in Turku, August 16th 2020. In the background Nordic Resistance Movement member Petri Nordman (red shirt, black mask) and the ethnonationalist Iisak Selin (suit and tie, carrying a banner to the right).

Linus LinsĂ©n at the fascist Aamunkoitto (“dawn”) conference in Southwest Finland, March 7th 2020. From left to right: Pauli Kaila (Ukonvasama collective, formerly NRM), Linus LinsĂ©n, Tuukka Kuru (the founder of the fascist party initiative Sinimusta liike), Tiina Wiik (a far-right radio host), Toni Jalonen (formerly Finns party, now Suomen Sisu) and Toni Saarinen.

Linus Linsén is the second chairman of Suomen Sisu in Varsinais-Suomi, and a key member of the recently founded youth wings Uudenmaan Akseli and Varsinais-Suomen Akseli. He is a student at the University of Turku and was (together with Henri HautamÀki) a board member of the Finns Party youth organization that was expelled for being too openly ethnonationalist. Linsén is however still a member of the Finns Party and was a candidate in the 2021 municipal elections (74 votes).

Screenshot from LinsĂ©nÂŽs Twitter account. “Gas the bikes, race car now!” is an example of a fascist “dog whistle”. The dog whistle is a political message that is obvious to supporters but vague to outsiders. This quote is not about car racing, but a word play on “Gas the kikes (Jews), race war now!”

“Our Paavo?” LinsĂ©n sharing a screenshot from the leftist Paavo ArhinmĂ€ki that had 14 retweets and 88 likes at that moment. 14/88 are numbers frequently used by Nazis and refer to “the 14 words” slogan. “88” are referring to the letter H, and the slogan “Heil Hitler”

Characters outside the Finns Party

In Varsinais-Suomi and Turku there are at the moment many far-right activists that belong to or used to be members of the so-called “ethnonationalist” youth wing that was expelled from the Finns Party. Several of the are simultaneously members of Suomen Sisu and due to the relatively small far-right milieu they often collaborate with each other.

Toni Mikael Saarinen 

Saarinen was the moderator at the “Aamunkoitto” conference in 2020, and chose to wear a t-shirt with the words “National Socialist”. Saarinen was the former secretary of the Finns Party youth and a Finns Party member. Due to this scandal he lost his position in the Turku Board of Youth.

Toni Saarinen was active in the “ethnonationalist movement” in the Finns Party for a few years and even visited a fascist conference in Estonia while he was the treasurer of the Finns Party youth in Turku. After the “Aamunkoitto” scandal he was forced to leave his positions, and after that he has mostly been bitterly posting racist music and homophobic Nazi propaganda on his social media accounts.

Toni Saarinen is using the Nordic Resistance Movement “Jammu-SetĂ€â€ sticker as his profile picture. The sticker is a part of a homophobic propaganda campaign insinuating that pedophilia would be accepted in the HLBTQ+ community.

Saarinen has mostly been posting homophobic material on Facebook this year.

Rikhard “Riku” Hautala

Rikhard “Riku” Hautala is a part of an older generation of Finnish fascists. He is a member of Suomen Sisu and a founding member of the fascist web magazine “Sarastus”.

Hautala has during the years been active in several fascist projects and has taken the role of older mentor for the Suomen Sisu youth projects Uudenmaan akseli and Varsinais-Suomen Akseli (which mostly consists of Finns Party youth expelled due to too racist views for the main party). Hautala is also friends with his Sarastus “co-worker”, the old Nazi skinhead Rami Leskinen and the couple is usually hanging out at the Daily News pub on Yliopistonkatu.

Riku Hautala writing death threats online

Riku Hautala (left) mentoring young Uudenmaan akseli members in the slopes of Espoo, January 12th 2021. Uudemaan akseli was started as a Suomen Sisu youth project to attract new members to the old fascist organization.

In this article we have not mentioned the Nazi music subculture, even though the Ukonvasama collective is active in the Turku area. The collective used to be more active earlier, but the organizers Pauli Kaila and Teemu Karhu have had an increasingly hard time finding secret locations due to anti-fascists revealing their venues in 2020 [link]. 

Another character that has been active in Varsinais-Suomi is Tuukka Kuru, who is active both in the Kansallismielisten liittouma coalition, Sinimusta liike party project and Suomen Sisu. He is nowadays living in Rauma and is therefore left outside this article.

The far-right 188-demonstration in Turku, August 2020. Left to right: Tero Ala-Tuuhonen, Terhi Kiemunki and Tuukka Kuru.

Since the far-right and neo-Nazis began organizing the “188 Kukkavirta” demonstrations in 2018, the number of participants has decreased and it is now mostly attracting about 150 far-right activists mostly from other cities. Simultaneously, the organizers have felt that the true nature of the demonstration no longer needs to be disguised, and in 2020 they used the American neo-Nazi slogan “White Lives Matter”. Through this we can see local examples of the themes of the global far-right here in Turku.

The importance of anti-fascist organizing 

The Finns Party activists continuously co-operate with the far-right and within Suomen Sisu, Kansallismielisten liittouma and other fascist movements, and in this article we have showcased the most prominent racists and fascists in Varsinais-Suomi. Some of the Finns Party youth wing that where expelled due to racism are still welcome to be members and candidates for the mother party. The party have brought racist and fascist ideas into the mainstream and normalized that worldview, increasingly so during the 2017-2021 period when Jussi Halla-Aho became chairman.

This is an ongoing process that needs to be discussed and dealt with. In the municipal elections 2021, the Finns Party had no problem allowing Linus Linsén, Henri HautamÀki and Ville Tavio to be candidates, and several other members share their worldviews.

The inhabitants of Turku have during many years shown that the city is anti-fascist, both through solidarity efforts and the Turku Ilman Natseja counter-demonstration. There is power in a community, but there is still a lot to be done. It is important to organize against fascism in the workplace, schools, among family and friends as well as in the streets. Fascism and racism has been growing in Finland for far too long and must be opposed on every level. The hope of the future is to be found in anti-fascism, anti-capitalism and feminism.

Are you interested in anti-fascist organizing or do you have information about the far-right in the Turku area? Contact us on varisturku@riseup.net 

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Source: Takku.net