U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Terrorism 2006 - Finland

Finland held the EU Presidency from July-December and made counterterrorism a top priority. The government led ongoing efforts within the EU to remove institutional barriers to counterterrorism cooperation and championed EU cooperation with the U.S. and international community. In November, Interior Minister Rajamaki visited Washington for discussions with Justice and Homeland Security officials, and FBI officials participated in Finnish-sponsored EU seminars.

Approximately 100 Finnish troops were deployed in Afghanistan in support of ongoing NATO operations, and a number of Finnish civilian crisis management experts were working in Afghanistan as well. Finland aims to provide ten million euros in development and humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan on an annual basis.

On October 1, 2005, new regulations entered into force requiring ships to submit security-related information prior to entry into port. Finland signed a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) with the United States; the treaty is awaiting ratification by the Finnish Parliament.

In cases when another government presented a legal request for action or when an individual or organization was suspected of having committed an offense within Finland's borders, Finland implemented regulations that allowed it to freeze assets without EU or UN approval. Finland amended its criminal code to make it possible to sentence leaders of terrorist groups to 15 years in jail, although the group would have to have actually committed an act of terrorism in Finland before investigation or prosecution could begin. If the charge included murder, the maximum sentence would be life imprisonment.


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