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Government and ministries Media

Promoting improved safety and security of premises of religious communities

Ministry of the Interior 12.8.2020 11.30 | Published in English on 12.8.2020 at 13.02
Press release 86/2020

The Ministry of the Interior has set up a working group tasked with identifying security threats to the premises of religious communities and drawing up proposals for improving safety and security.

The working group will gather information on security threats, particularly against Jewish synagogues and Muslim prayer rooms and mosques. The working group will also make proposals on how to improve the safety and security of these communities through training, improving security measures and expertise in safety and security matters, and developing the organisation of security work.  A manual for improving safety and security will also be drawn up on the basis of the material.

The task of the working group is based on the Government Resolution on the National Action Plan for the Prevention of Violent Radicalisation and Extremism, issued in December 2019. In recent years, security threats to the premises of religious communities and members of communities using the premises have increased. Serious attacks have been carried out on such premises in different countries, and more threats and vandalism are being directed at them in Finland, too. Finland's objective is to prevent security threats by proactively improving security measures and expertise in safety and security matters.

The working group includes members from the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of Education and Culture, the Finnish National Rescue Association and key religious communities and organisations. In addition, the working group will consult representatives of religious communities during the work to ensure that the views of different communities will be taken into account in the work as widely as possible. If necessary, the working group may also consult other experts.

The term of the working group will continue until 31 May 2021.

Inquiries:

Tarja Mankkinen, Head of Development, tel. +358 295 488 370, [email protected]