Finns elect their President this Sunday, a post whose importance has increased since the country’s entry nato Facing tension with your neighbor Russia By war in ukraine,
electoral college The northern European country, which shares a 1,340-kilometre border with Russia, will open at 9:00 am and close at 20:00 pm.
It is expected that the first official data of the count, corresponding to early voting, will be made public a few minutes after the polling stations close.
Analysts estimate that bet may cross the number recorded in the first round when they cast their vote 75% Finns Residents of Nordic countries and those living in other countries account for only 16.1%.
About 43 lakh voters They will have to choose between the former Conservative Prime Minister, Alexander Stubb and former head of diplomacy, Pekka Haavisto.
Stubb won the first round of the election. 28 January with 27.2% of the votes, ahead of Haavisto, who received 25.8% of the votes and presented himself as independent candidate Despite being a member of the Green Party.
The head of state, who has less powers than the Prime Minister, is elected for a six-year term and heads foreign policy In close cooperation with the Government of the country. He is also the supreme commander of Armed forces.
Since then its role has gained importance war in ukraine and entry of finland natoTo which Russia promised to respond with “countermeasures”.
The Nordic countries remained neutral during this period cold war And has been a loyal defender of dialogue between the West and Russia.
but after that Russian invasion of Ukraine In February 2022, the country ended three decades of military non-alignment.
in August, Finland accuses Moscow of creating migrant crisis on its borders, As a result, it decided to close its border with Russia in November, a move supported by both candidates.
“The fact that we have just joined NATO is quite significant,” analyzes political science researcher Theodora Helimaki. University of Helsinki,
He believes that the new president will be “largely” responsible for the way the coalition is deployed in the country.
A survey was conducted by public television on Thursday Yale Stubb was awarded a 54% votesCompared to 46% for Haavisto.
Both candidates worked former foreign minister And they share the same approach regarding the position to be taken towards Russia.
Stubb is from the Conservative Party cocumsWhere the current Prime Minister also comes from, Petteri Orpoand the outgoing President, Sauli Niinistö, who has finished his two six-year terms.
The conservative candidate, who headed the government and three ministries in his previous run, returns to Finnish politics after serving as vice president for seven years. European Investment Bank (EIB) and, later, professor at the European University Institute (IUE).
However, according to researcher Theodora Helimaki, the difference between the two lies in the specifics, citing the issue of storage and transportation of nuclear weapons in Finland.
While Haavisto does not want to authorize them, Stubb believes the country should not exclude “any part” of the alliance’s nuclear deterrence policy.
(With information from AFP)