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Signs with political slogans removed from Parliament windows after complaints

Guards at the building asked for the signs, which contained strong views on climate change and immigration, to be removed.

Eduskuntatalon heijastus eduskunnan Pikkuparlamentin ikkunoissa.
The glass facade of the Parliament Annex building. Image: Timo Jaakonaho / Lehtikuva

Numerous calls led to security personnel taking steps to remove signs displayed in the windows of MP offices in a building of the Finnish Parliament on Friday. One sign demanded a tough law addressing climate change, while the other called for Finnish borders to be closed.

The windows with the signs looked in on the interior of the Parliament Annex building, where a restaurant is located.

"In my 18 years here, I can't recall anything like it," said Lasse Jartti, a long-time security officer at the Finnish Parliament. He said he gave the order to remove the signs from the highly visible places, as he judged them to be inappropriate.

Freshman populist Finns Party MP Sebastian Tynkkynen's signs, one with the political slogan "Close the Borders" and another inviting those who want to learn more about his immigration policy to visit his office, were on display for just one day before they were removed.

He later pointed out on Twitter that it was only after he put up his sign that a decision was made to remove the signs, saying that the sign demanding swift climate legislation had been in the window much longer.

"Different standards apply to nationalist sentiments," he wrote in his tweet.

Tynkkynen told Yle that he planned to immediately put his sign back up if someone else makes the mistake of posting "left-green propaganda" in a window.

Climate sign on display longer

The sign calling for strict climate laws was the property of Left Alliance party secretary Laura Koskinen, who is in charge of drawing up her party's climate policies. Koskinen displayed this sign and another that commented on Finland's forestry laws with the slogan "Our national assets are not for sale" in her office window about a week ago.

"I wasn't aware that it was prohibited. I'm not upset at all; I removed the signs immediately, of course," she said, adding that she hadn't heard of or seen MP Tynkkynen's retaliatory signs.

Koskinen says she had received the climate speech bubble as a gift. She remembers that it had been on display earlier, in another office facing the restaurant, during the last parliamentary term.

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