Finnish President says EU left in the shadow of strongman politics


In an interview with UK daily Financial Times (paywall) published on Monday, President Sauli Niinistö reflected on the current state of geopolitics, saying that the world has entered an era of strongman politics that has marginalised many small states like Finland.

He named current world leaders such as Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President Donald Trump and Chinese premier Xi Jinping as embodiments of “personalised global policy”.

In this age of “peak persons” Niinistö told the paper, “it’s difficult to get a seat at the table because it’s a table for the strong and powerful,” he noted.

FT reported that Niinistö did not hold back from naming Russia as a major point of concern. He borrowed an old Finnish adage to counsel EU leaders to approach discussions with Moscow with a combination of steadfastness and respect.

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