Finnish, Russian presidents to meet at Arctic Forum next week

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Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) meets with Finnish President Sauli Niinisto during the International Arctic Forum in Arkhangelsk on March 30, 2017. (Sergei Karpukhin/AFP/Getty Images)
Finnish President Sauli Niinistö plans to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg next week, as he attends the International Arctic Forum.

Niinistö is scheduled to address the plenary session of the forum on Tuesday 9 April, the first of a two-day “Arctic: Territory of Dialogue” event.

In a press release issued on Monday, the Finnish president’s office said Niinistö would hold a bilateral meeting with Putin in connection with the forum, but did not elaborate on specific topics the leaders planned to discuss.

The aim of the forum, which is being held for the fifth time, is to support sustainable development in the Arctic, according to the president’s office.

Finland is nearing the end of a two-year stint as chair of the Arctic Council, a position it will hand over to Iceland next month.

Niinistö has participated in Arctic Council forums, most recently in 2017 in Arkhangelsk, Russia and in 2013 in Salekhard, Russia.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: Canada sends low-key delegation to 2017 Arctic forum in Russia, Radio Canada International

Finland: U.S., Russia thwarting black carbon reduction efforts in Arctic, says Finland, Eye on the Arctic

Iceland: Iceland & UK sign agreement to boost security, defence cooperation, Eye on the Arctic

Norway: Norwegian PM, FM to travel to Russia for Arctic Forum, The Independent Barents Observer

Russia: Cooperation with Russia in the Arctic makes sense; an Arctic Summit does not, Blog by Heather Exner-Pirot

Sweden: Swedish PM Löfven to join Arctic talks with Putin, The Independent Barents Observer

United States: U.S. must pay attention to growing China-Russia alliance in Arctic: expert, Alaska Public Media

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