Photo: Atle Staalesen

UN Committee blasts Finland over electorate ruling for Sami Parliament

The UN has criticised Finland’s administrative courts for adding 93 people to the electoral register for the Sami parliament against the wishes of the Sami members of that parliament, who did not regard those 93 people as Sami.
February 02, 2019

A complaint was lodged with the United Nations Human Rights Committee by Tiina Sanila-Aikio, President of the Sami Parliament. She argued that the addition of 93 people to the register in 2015 violated the rights of the Sami as an indigenous people to decide who is a member of their community.

The committee agreed, stating in its ruling that the Supreme Administrative Court “infringed on the capacity of the Sami people, through its Parliament, to exercise a key dimension of Sami self-determination in determining who is a Sami”.

The committee recommended that Finland change the Sami Parliament law to ensure Sami self-determination is fully respected, and that Finland take action to ensure that similar violations don’t occur in the future.

This story is posted on the Barents Observer as part of Eye on the Arctic, a collaborative partnership between public and private circumpolar media organizations.



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