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Government resolution guides Finland’s counter-terrorism activities

Ministry of the Interior
Publication date 17.11.2022 13.41
Press release
Photo: Miisa Kaartinen

The Government has adopted a resolution on the National Counter-Terrorism Strategy for 2022–2025. The Strategy sets out the strategic counter-terrorism objectives and actions and supports sustained and broad cooperation among all those involved in counter-terrorism. This is an update to the previous strategy and it does not contain any significant new strategic guidelines.

“The Strategy will guide Finland’s counter-terrorism activities both nationally and internationally. It responds to the demands posed by a changing operating environment and the constantly growing threat of terrorism. The activities of all of those involved in counter-terrorism must be consistent, systematic and sustained in order to be successful. The Strategy will help strengthen these activities,” says Minister of the Interior Krista Mikkonen.

The new Strategy aims to reinforce existing cooperation models and to support the creation of new approaches. This is the fourth government-level document of its kind. The Strategy is updated every four years.

According to the Finnish Security and Intelligence Service’s assessment, the threat of terrorism in Finland is at the second level, or ‘elevated’, on the four-tier scale. The threat level has remained unchanged since 2017. 

Counter-terrorism in Finland is a joint effort of the authorities and societal actors

Counter-terrorism in Finland is based on cooperation and partnership among all authorities and societal actors. The effectiveness of counter-terrorism as a whole is enhanced by the parties’ understanding of the various actors’ resources and scope of action and the related cooperation, powers based on law and a clear division of responsibilities. Information required to combat terrorism is generated not only by public authorities but also by parties responsible for society’s vital functions and sites, by the municipalities and by civil society. 

Finland is actively involved in the international fight against terrorism

Counter-terrorism activities call for extensive international and EU-wide cooperation. Finland is actively involved in counter-terrorism cooperation and prevention of the violent radicalisation that leads to terrorism. The major cooperation forums for Finland are the UN, the EU, the Council of Europe, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the Global Coalition to Defeat Daesh/ISIS, the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) and Interpol.

As a future NATO member, Finland is fully committed to counter-terrorism, including within the framework of NATO.

Combating terrorism, and violent radicalisation and extremism that lead to terrorism, as part of international security and development cooperation safeguards Finland’s national interests and promotes the security of Finland and people living here. Finland will continue to prevent violent radicalisation and extremism in accordance with the action plan 2019–2023.

Counter-Terrorism Strategy closely linked to other guidance documents

Like the previous strategies, the new strategy is closely linked to other strategic guidance documents related to security. The most essential of these include the Government Report on Internal Security, the Government Report on Finnish Foreign and Security Policy, the Government's Defence Report, the Security Strategy for Society and Finland’s Cyber Security Strategy 2019. The strategic counter-terrorism objectives and actions have been aligned with the said strategies and the action plans drawn up on the basis of them. 

The Ministry of the Interior is responsible for updating the National Counter-Terrorism Strategy. It will monitor the implementation of the Strategy and prepare an interim report on the Strategy in 2024.

Sami Nevalainen, Assistant Police Director (counter-terrorism), tel. +358 295 488 545, [email protected]
Hanna Nykänen, Chief Specialist (prevention of violent radicalisation and extremism), tel. +358 295 488 534, [email protected]