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Kanerva withdraws from Turku council

Convicted last month for accepting bribes, veteran politician and National Coalition Party MP Ilkka Kanerva announced Sunday evening that he is temporarily stepping away from his duties as a city councillor.

Ilkka Kanerva.
Image: YLE

Turku City Council was set to debate Kanerva's position on Monday.

Kanerva left his position as chair of the Regional Council of Southwest Finland late last month, but remained as a local councillor in his home city of Turku.

In April, Kanerva was convicted of accepting bribes from property developers seeking planning permission for shopping malls in the region. The former long-time cabinet minister was handed a suspended prison sentence of three years and three months and ordered to be removed from positions of public trust.

He has appealed his conviction.

On Sunday evening Ilkka Kanerva issues a press release to the effect that he is temporarily withdrawing from council post. Turku City Council was set to debate his position, in light of the conviction, on Monday.

Kanerva told Yle that he made the decision in order to avoid being "tried" again by his fellow council members.

At the same time, he announced that he will be available to stand as a candidate in next autumn's municipal elections.


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