Supporters defend Finnish PM Sanna Marin’s right to party after video leak | Finland


Leaked video of Sanna Marin dancing exuberantly has sparked controversy in Finland, with critics of the 36-year-old prime minister accusing her of inappropriate behaviour and supporters praising her fashion and defending her right to party.

The video, first printed by the tabloid Iltalehti and compiled from a number of since-deleted Instagram clips, exhibits Finland’s youngest ever chief dancing enthusiastically and ingesting with mates, apparently in a personal condominium.

Other friends recognized within the footage, which Marin on Thursday acknowledged was real and mentioned was filmed “a few weeks ago”, embody two well-known TV and radio hosts, a social Media influencer, a YouTuber, a stylist, the singer Alma and an MP from Marin’s Social Democratic party.

Marin informed reporters she was “upset” that the clips, which she knew had been being filmed however had believed would stay non-public, had been leaked. “I spent the evening with my friends, partied, even in a rowdy way, danced and sang,” she mentioned.

Finnish Media alleged a voice within the background could possibly be heard shouting “the flour gang”, supposedly a reference to cocaine or amphetamines. Marin and different commentators denied this was the time period used, nevertheless, and he or she mentioned she didn’t know what it meant.

“I myself have not used drugs, nor anything other than alcohol,” she mentioned. “Nor have I been in such a situation that I would have seen or known others [using drugs]. I was dancing, singing, partying … hugging my friends, doing totally legal things.”

She mentioned she had nothing “to conceal or hide” and was decided to proceed to be “the same person as I have been until now … I have free time that I spend with my friends. I’m pretty sure that’s the same as many people my age”.

The video triggered an immediate backlash. Mikko Kärnä, a Centre party MP, tweeted that the prime minister ought to take a medicine check and publish the outcome. “The people are entitled to expect this from their prime minister,” he mentioned.

Iltalehti columnist Lauri Nurmi mentioned the scenario was “serious” for Marin. “It goes without saying that the prime minister of Finland cannot be present at parties where narcotics prohibited by the criminal code are openly consumed,” he mentioned.

Marin responded that she was prepared to take a medicine check if essential. “I have nothing to hide,” she repeated to reporters afterward Thursday. “I haven’t used drugs, so it’s not a problem to go for a tests. But I also think it’s quite unusual that something like this is required.”

Some social Media customers described her as incompetent and irresponsible. Others, nevertheless, defended Marin’s right to party. A senior Social Democrat MP, Antti Lindtman, mentioned she had “a lot of sympathy and support”. There was “dancing at a private event”, he mentioned. “I see nothing to write home about.”

Marin, who was the world’s youngest prime minister in 2019, has received widespread reward for her dealing with of the Covid pandemic, during which Finland fared higher than most EU member states, and of the fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Finland received independence from Russia solely in 1917 and shares an 810-mile border with its highly effective jap neighbour, whose forces it twice repelled through the second world battle, however Marin this 12 months piloted its path out of many years of neutrality and non-alignment to apply for Nato membership.

Her private fashion has additionally received her admirers exterior Finland. Commenting on {a photograph} of Marin heading to Helsinki’s Flow pageant in a second-hand glittery gown, Germany’s Bild tabloid this week described her as “relaxed, modern and confident”.

Marin is a member of “the cool generation”, the paper mentioned, “the most important politician in her country, leading it through one of the most dangerous crises of her time – and who still finds time to celebrate”.

This shouldn’t be, nevertheless, the primary time her partying has acquired her into hassle. In December she was compelled to apologise on Facebook when she danced at a Helsinki nightclub till 4am after coming into contact together with her overseas minister, who had examined constructive for Covid.

She mentioned she had initially been informed she didn’t want to self-isolate as a result of she had been totally vaccinated, however later missed a textual content message advising her to achieve this as a result of it had been despatched to her authorities phone, which she had left at residence.

Critics claimed failing to double-check the rules was proof of poor judgment, whereas the choice to depart her official telephone at residence was a possible nationwide safety breach. Marin later mentioned she was “very sorry” for the lapse.

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