Russia terminates cross-border agreement with Finland

There are very limited contacts across Finland’s northernmost border with Russia. Here from Ivalo. (Thomas Nilsen/The Independent Barents Observer)

Amid growing tensions with Helsinki, Moscow now put an end to a deal supposed to support regional cooperation across borders.

Millions of euros have been invested in cultural cooperation, environmental improvement, social well-being, business development, and infrastructure over the last decade.

Finland has played on the funding instruments provided by the European Union’s Interreg programs, the Barents cooperation, and the Northern Dimension. Now the door is closed. Moscow says stop.

Russia’s Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin on October 20 signed a decree terminating the 2012 agreement with the Finnish Government on promoting cross-border cooperation.

Misustin orders the Foreign Ministry to inform the Finnish part about the decision.

Increasing isolation 

Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year, nearly all practical cross-border cooperation with Finland has come to a halt.

Russia has been isolated from the Barents Council, the Arctic Council, the Baltic Sea Council, and other arenas for regional cooperation. Sanctions have limited trade and borders are again seeing an Iron Curtain coming down.

Related stories from around the North: 

Canada: Police in Northwestern Canada’s border territory can now ticket people who violate travel restrictions, CBC News

Finland: Finnair starts cross-border winter flights between destinations above Arctic Circle, The independant Barents Observer

Norway: Border trouble not on agenda when FSB boss visited Norway, The Independent Barents Observer

Russia: More Russian men flee Putin’s call-up decree via northern borders, The Independent Barents Observer

Sweden: Key NATO commanders teamed up with newcomer Sweden at northern border with Russia, The independant Barents Observer

Thomas Nilsen, The Independent Barents Observer

For more news from the Barents region visit The Independent Barents Observer.

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