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More asylum seekers than usual have arrived at the border of Southeast Finland without required travel documents

Publication date 12.11.2023 13.36
Press release

Since the beginning of August 2023, 91 people have arrived at the border crossing points in Southeastern Finland without required travel documents. These persons have applied for asylum in Finland. The amount is higher than usual.

The majority of these persons lacked the visa required for entry. These persons are citizens of third countries and have used Russia for transit.

Previously, Russian authorities have not allowed travel from Russia to Finnish border crossing points, if the passenger has not had the required travel documents. In recent months, the actions of the Russian authorities have changed, at least on the border with Southeastern Finland. Unlike before, they have allowed travel despite lack of documents.

According to the Finnish Border Guard's assessment, this is a phenomenon of illegal migration. International crime is probably also linked to the phenomenon. The number of illegal border crossings at the land border (areas outside of border crossing points) has not changed.

There have been similar cases on the Eastern border before, especially after the Russian invasion of Ukraine started. At that time applicants for temporary protection arrived in Finland from Ukraine with incomplete documents.

The Border Guard closely monitors the development of the situation and together with other security authorities evaluates the nature and effects of the phenomenon to Finland's public order and security. Based on this assessment, if necessary, further measures allowed by legislation can be taken.

More information:

Colonel Matti Pitkäniitty tel. 0295 421131 (Finnish Border Guard HQ)
Lt Colonel Jukka Lukkari tel. 0295 422002 (Southeastern Finland Border Guard District)

Finnish Border Guard Raja – press release