Member of Parliament Mari Kiviniemi appointed OECD Deputy Secretary-General

By decision of the OECD Council, Member of Parliament Mari Kiviniemi was appointed Deputy Secretary-General of the organization for a term of two years on 25 July.

Kiviniemi is the first Finn to be named Deputy Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), based in Paris, during Finland's 45-year membership of the organization. "This appointment indicates that Finland has good candidates to offer for a diverse range of international tasks for which competition is fierce and candidates from the smallest countries often find it difficult to be elected", Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja states.

During her two-year term, Mari Kiviniemi will be one of four Deputy Secretary-Generals of the OECD. Kiviniemi is well versed in matters within the OECD's line of operations and for instance served as the Chair of the 2009 Ministerial Meeting of the OECD Territorial Development Policy Committee.



Prime Minister Stubb and Prime Minister Medvedev discussed the situation in Ukraine

Prime Minister Alexander Stubb and the Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev spoke on the phone on Thursday, 24 July. In the call initiated by the Finnish side, the Prime Ministers had an open and good discussion about the situation in Ukraine after the downing of the Malaysian airliner, as well as the EU's reactions to the crash.

The Prime Ministers agreed the downing of the aircraft had been a great tragedy, and its thorough investigation was now absolutely necessary. Both expressed their condolences for the crash. The Prime Ministers agreed the downing of the airliner had turned a local conflict into a European one.

Prime Minister Stubb noted that from the point of view of the European Union, the downing of the airliner had become a turning point in the Ukraine crisis.

"I told Prime Minister Medvedev the EU was expecting full co-operation from Russia in the de-escalation of the situation in Eastern Ukraine. As sufficient action has not yet been seen, the EU will add new names to its sanctions list and also stands ready to widen the scope of its sanctions into economic and trade sectors", says Prime Minister Stubb.

Prime Minister Stubb and Prime Minister Medvedev agreed on the importance of continued dialogue and will continue their bilateral communication.



Two Finnish aid workers were killed today in Herat, Western Afghanistan

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs has been in contact with the family and employer of the deceased, and has expressed condolences.

The Finns were working for a project of the International Assistance Mission. The organization carries out cooperation with Finnish NGOs in Afghanistan.



Prime Minister's condolences to families of Finns killed in Afghanistan

Prime Minister Alexander Stubb has today expressed his condolences to the families and friends of the Finnish aid workers killed in Afghanistan.

"We are faced with a great tragedy. Now, it is important the we support the bereaved families. Finland requires that a thorough investigation be conducted to bring those guilty to justice. Finland must also reassess the security situation in Afghanistan," Prime Minister Stubb said.