The Finnish border guard announced on Tuesday that the construction of a dam on the border with Russia has begun. Ultimately, the authorities in Helsinki intend to erect a fence on a section of about 200 kilometers, and its construction is to be completed within three to four years.
Near Imatra, in the southeast Finlandthe construction of a dam on the border with Russia – informed the Finnish border guard. The three-meter-high fence, which is being built as part of the pilot project, is to stretch over three kilometers.
Preliminary field work is related to the removal of trees so that in March an access road can be laid, the first elements of the barrier erected and a monitoring system installed. A part of the fence section is being built in a military area, which will enable tests and training of services. The entire pilot episode should be ready by the end of June.
As part of the first tranche of financing the construction of the fence, it is planned to secure the most important sections of the border from the point of view of illegal immigration, i.e. south-eastern Finland, gathering mainly traffic from St. Petersburg and Moscow – approx. 55 km; North Karelia – approx. 7 km and further north and Lapland – a total of approx. 10 km.
Finland is building a dam on the border with Russia
The entire Finnish-Russian land border is over 1,300 km long. Ultimately, the Finnish authorities intend to erect a fence on a section of approx. 200 km, and its construction is to be completed within three to four years.
Until recently, the construction of a fence on the border with Russia aroused much controversy in Finland. When in autumn 2021 Poland struggled with the instrumental exploitation of migrants and a hybrid operation by the authorities Belarus, many Finnish politicians and experts were skeptical about the effectiveness of a similar protection of the border with Russia. Among others, the unprofitability of the fence construction project, difficult soil, water and climatic conditions were pointed out.
The current centre-left government Sanny Marin “naivety” and “slow decision-making” were accused at the time. Russia’s armed aggression against Ukraine quickly led to a change of political will in Helsinki and accelerated the decision-making process on securing the border.
Main photo source: Reuters Archive