Finland Leader: Criticizing Immigrant Child Abusers is 'Hate Speech'
Recent case of migrant rape gang causes outrage amongst Finnish citizens
Finland's prime minister Juha Sipilä has warned Finnish citizens to refrain from “disseminating hate speech” amid investigations into a migrant rape gang preying on children.
Referring to recent events in Oulu were authorities identified a ten foreign suspects linked to recent cases concerning child grooming, child sex abuse, and violence against children as young as ten years old, Sipilä urged Finns not to “stir up hatred” against migrants.
Even though the incidents have provoked "shock and anger” amongst the country's citizens, the Finnish leader asserted “it should be emphasized that the suspected crimes were committed by individuals, not by population groups.”
“I call for these events not to be used in anger against refugees or people of foreign origin,” Sipilä declared in his speech on Monday.
“Let me point out that vigilante justice is a crime in the eyes of the law, as is disseminating hate speech.”
“Persons found guilty of crimes will be held accountable for their actions by the rule of law,” he added before promising to get tough on foreign criminals.
“Serious offenses will negatively affect [a third world migrant’s chances] of obtaining a permanent residence permit.”
Just last month Finnish lawmakers considered revoking citizenship from foreign nationals who have been sentenced for crimes related to terrorism or treason.
The incident in Oulu caused much outrage after it was discovered that the suspects entered Finland illegally and where probably shipped into the country via refugee quota schemes.
Interior minister Kai Mykkänen pressed lawmakers to extend the bill so that sanctions would also apply to people found guilty of severe sexual crimes.
A rapid rise in asylum seekers entering Finland has been blamed to the sharp rise in sexual violence in the country.
Official statistics from 2017 revealed that Iraqi and Afghan migrants were overrepresented by up to 40 times in sexual assault suspects compared to that of native Finnish citizens.
Last Month Finland's police issued a warning to citizens:
“At worst, their contacts have led to serious sexual offenses," the statement reads, urging that parents "need to be aware of whom their children spend time with both on and offline."
Juha Sipilä, Finland's PM, called the case “inhumane.”
He tweeted: “A sexual offense against a child is an inhumane act, and its wickedness cannot be comprehended.”
According to The Helsinki Times, the minister of Interior Kai Mykkanen referred to the case on Monday, saying: “Things like these should not be happening in Finland.”