Minister of Justice Antti Häkkänen said on Tuesday that religion or culture cannot be used to justify the violation of the rights of women or girls through forced marriages or genital mutilation, for instance. Speaking in Helsinki, he said diversity does not mean that parallel communities that do not ensure all basic rights should be allowed to develop in the country.
“Finland is an open, international country that is rich linguistically and culturally, and where basic rights belong equally to everyone... Finnish justice gives equal protection to everyone, regardless of skin colour, religion, gender, culture or other background,” he said.
“There is no room in Finland for Sharia law or other efforts towards a parallel society,” Häkkänen added.
The minister was speaking at the Etno-forum seminar, hosted by the Advisory Board for Ethnic Relations, which works under the auspices of the Ministry of Justice.
Häkkänen, a 33-year-old first-term MP, is seen as a rising star within the conservative National Coalition Party. He became justice minister just over a year ago.