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Parliamentary consideration of equal marriage initiative set for March 13

Twitter updates from Finnish MPs on Thursday indicate that the Finnish Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee has unanimously decided to send the citizens’ initiative to legalize gay marriage on for parliamentary consideration.

Miespariskunnan kädet.
Image: Vesa Moilanen / Lehtikuva

Among others, committee members Jaana Pelkonen and Mikael Jungner tweeted that a public hearing will be arranged on the citizens’ initiative on Thursday, March 13.

The initiative was referred to the committee last Thursday after a debate was arranged on the committee referral in Parliament. The Finnish Parliament last considered the gender-neutral marriage bill a year ago, but it was never presented for parliamentary consideration, as the Legal Affairs Committee rejected the initiative with an 8-to-9 vote.

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Finnish police carrying out forced returns of rejected Iraqi asylum seekers

Charter flights arranged by the Finnish police have carried 1,500 rejected asylum seekers voluntarily back to Iraq since the turn of the year, while the International Organization of Migration (IOM) has assisted with 1,395 voluntary returns from Finland to Iraq in the same period. A representative of the Finnish police says individual forced returns to Iraq have also taken place for some who refuse to leave voluntarily, despite the absence of an agreement between the countries on repatriation.

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