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Monday's papers: Afghan evacuations, post-pandemic public transport and weird words

Finland has now evacuated some 110 people from Afghanistan, Finnish media reports.

Utrikesminister Pekka Haavisto (Gröna) håller presskonferens om läget i Afghanistan den 22 augusti 2021.
Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto (Green) speaking to the press on Sunday, 22 August. Image: Lehtikuva
Yle News

As in much of the rest of the world, Afghanistan has a prominent place in Finnish media on Monday morning.

Finnish troops arrived in Kabul on Saturday to support the Foreign Ministry's relief team at Kabul airport as the situation there grows increasingly dire, and all the papers report Sunday evening's press briefing by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the operation.

Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto (Green) said evacuees include the Finnish mission's current and former locally hired staff, reports Helsingin Sanomat.

"They are coming with their families. The youngest evacuee is a baby just a few weeks old," Haavisto said on Sunday evening, adding that about half of Finnish citizens or permanent residents in Afghanistan have been brought to safety.

The Foreign Ministry stressed that the chaotic situation at the airport remains the main challenge faced by Finland and the other evacuating countries.

"At times people at the airport have been trampled to death. In these instances we can't in good faith invite people to come to the airport," Haavisto said.

Enticing commuters

Some customers taking advantage of Helsinki Region Transport's campaign offering half price season tickets have been debited full price, reports Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet.

"Users purchased 21,800 season tickets on the first day of the campaign, with 11,600 of them being first-time in-app purchases," said HSL spokesperson Johannes Laitila of the campaign aimed at bolstering passenger volumes that have dwindled during the pandemic.

He said customers using an earlier version of the HSL app have been overcharged.

"We encourage everyone who was incorrectly debited to fill in a form on the HSL website for reimbursement," Laitila said.

The discount is, however, only available to HSL app users, as travel cards aren't equipped to accommodate temporary price adjustments, he added.

Say what?

Finnish has a reputation as a difficult language, but that said, many common English words also stump Finnish speakers.

Hiace, delete and Fairy—these are some of the most common tongue twisters for Finns.

Ilta-Sanomat's compilation of tricky foreign words also included U2, Levi's, Halloween, butter chicken and Weetabix, which the tabloid said Finns can mostly manage by using Finnish pronunciation.

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