The Kremlin expressed its deep regret over Finland’s decision to close border crossings with Russia, claiming that it reflects Helsinki’s anti-Russian stance. Finland, as a member of the European Union and NATO, closed four crossings on its border with Russia in an effort to stop the flow of asylum seekers, which it believes was instigated by Moscow. These border crossings were the busiest points of entry. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied Finland’s accusation that Russia was intentionally pushing illegal migrants towards the border and stated that Russian border guards were following the rules. Peskov expressed disappointment over the closure of the crossings, stating that it has replaced the previously good relations between the two countries with a Russophobic position. Finland shares a 1,340-km border with Russia, which also serves as the EU’s external border. Helsinki has accused Russia of directing migrants to the crossings as retaliation for Finland’s decision to increase defense cooperation with the United States, a claim dismissed by the Kremlin. Finland’s decision to join NATO in April, following Russia’s war against Ukraine, has also strained relations between the two countries.
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