Sami Rights Policy in Finland: Delay Tactics until the problem disappears?

“The future of the Sami people depends on the Sami rights.” Carsten Smith, previous Supreme Court Justice of Norway

Today we celebrate the 60th anniversary of the UN Declaration of Human Rights. I want to take notice of this by reviewing Finland’s dismal record of recognizing the human rights of the Sami. Finnish human rights policy has been characterized by striking doublestandards for the past two decades. In the international arena, Finland maintains an image of staunch defender of human rights. Back at home, however, the Sami rights – which belong to the category of internationally recognized collective human rights – are regularly trampled, neglected and forgotten in ministers’ drawers.

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