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Tuomioja: Custody case won’t change relations with Russia

The ongoing clash between Finland and Russia over a controversial child custody case won’t change practical relations between the two countries, says Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja.

Erkki Tuomioja vieraili Ylen aamu-tv:ssä lauantaina. Image: Yle

Tuomioja met with his Russian counterpart on the sidelines of a gathering of EU and Russian foreign ministry officials in Luxembourg Sunday.

Finland and its eastern neighbour confirmed that they will cooperate on child custody cases as was agreed when the foreign ministers met in August.

Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja and Sergei Lavrov met for a few minutes Sunday to discuss a recent case in which four children were removed from the custody of their Russian mother in Finland.

“Finland has delivered a list of officials whom Russia can contact in child custody cases,” Tuomioja told Yle.

The foreign minister said that Russia is expected to deliver a similar list to Finland in the near future. He stressed that that this cooperation will not result in any changes in legislation or established practice in relations between the two countries.

“Neither side thinks of this as a political problem,” he added.