Tuesday Newspapers: Finno-Ugric aggro, unrest over mining permits and Kuier visa delay | News

Russian organizations have criticized the world umbrella organization of the Finno-Ugric peoples.

A mining company has reserved exploration rights on a section of Lake Päijänne. Image: Elina Rantalainen / Yle

There aren’t many communities in the world where Finno-Ugric languages ​​are spoken, but the World Congress of Finno-Ugric Peoples is where they meet every four years.

In addition to Hungary, Finland and Estonia, delegates arrive from communities in Russia where Husband, Mordvin and other Ugric languages ​​are spoken.

This year, Tartu in Estonia is expected to host the delayed 2020 event, but the Russian association representing the Finno-Ugric peoples, Afun, does not seem enthusiastic about the event.

Helsingin Sanomat reports (siirryt toiseen palveluun) that Afun released a statement online criticizing the event, claiming that the representatives of Finland and Estonia are too arrogant and generally focus on criticizing Russia at the congress, and question whether the congress should continue.

President of the Finland-Russia association and one of the congress organizers Niina sinkko says she’s mystified by the critics.

“I would like to discuss this with Afun, but we were unable to reach them after their statement was released,” Sinkko said.

Tonu seilenthal, one of the organizers in Estonia, said that Afun was not representative of the Finno-Ugric people in Russia, but rather of the local authorities of the districts and regions where they live.

“I have information suggesting that some of the representatives of Russia [Finno-Ugric] the people are not happy with the declaration, ”said Seilenthal. “One might assume that the statement is the point of view of Afun’s management.

HS says it remains to be seen whether Russian representatives will show up in Tartu. In particular, people of working age in Russia might fear the consequences of attending the event, if that could be seen as defying the authorities.

Mining mystery

And these waters are nationally significant. Lake Päijänne is the second largest lake in Finland which provides drinking water to 1.5 million people in and around the capital region via a tunnel leading to Vantaa.

Iltalehti reports that Pallagen Oy has reserved mineral exploration rights over an area covering some 468 square kilometers. The president of the company is André Darcy, and a board member is Ian lynch. Both have roles with UK mining company Element-46.

This means that for the next two years they can dig small areas, and for fifteen years after that it is possible to do larger exploratory digs looking for copper, cobalt, gold, palladium, platinum and rhodium.

The area contains some 932 residential properties and 3,013 vacation homes. Many residents are upset and have asked the company for answers.

After an information evening for residents, the company said it could reduce the size of its claim because the area they are interested in is quite small.

An expert interviewed by Yle says companies tend to book large areas just for the sake of safety, because it’s easy to do and there is little risk.

Municipalities have little power to intervene, but Finnish mining legislation is currently under review. One of the proposed changes is to give municipalities a veto over mining operations.

In the meantime, online campaigns against this particular project have quickly gained support.

Kuier blocked in Finland

The 19-year-old Finnish basketball star Awak Kuier is expected to start her WNBA career on Friday, but is unlikely to do so as she is still stuck in Finland.

His Dallas Wings will travel to the Los Angeles Sparks on Friday, but Kuier will likely be watching the game from Finland as his visa has yet to be processed.

Kuier is the first Finn to be selected in the first round of the WNBA Draft and will be the first to play in the league when she makes her debut.

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