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Finland prohibits crossing border with Russia on bikes - media

December 27, 2015, 7:56 UTC+3 HELSINKI
The border patrol service said that the measure was introduced because "riding bicycles in the winter is a threat to cyclists themselves and other participants of road traffic"
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© AP Photo/Martti Kainulainen, Lehtikuva

HELSINKI, December 27. /TASS/. Finland’s border patrol service has prohibited to cross the border with Russia on a bicycle, MTV3 TV channel reported on Sunday citing the Lapland border patrol service.

It is allowed to cross the border only by car now. The measure was taken due to the situation when more and more refugees are coming to Finland from the Russian territory on bicycles. The measure will be enforced only on northern border checkpoints Salla and Raja Jooseppi.

The border patrol service said that the measure was introduced because "riding bicycles in the winter is a threat to cyclists themselves and other participants of road traffic."

From Wednesday to Friday no asylum seekers came to Finland’s border checkpoints. On Saturday a car came to the border, and five out of six passengers filed for asylum in Finland. The sixth passenger was a Russian citizen who did not file for asylum but is now suspected of organizing illegal transportation of refugees across the border.

According to the Interior Ministry, up to 35,000 refugees may arrive to Finland by the end of 2015. The ministry earlier expected as much as 50,000 refugees to arrive. In 2014, around 4,000 refugees arrived in Finland. Since the start of 2015, more than 32,000 migrants came to Finland, mostly from Iraq. Most refugees come through the border with Sweden, while more than 600 people arrived from the Finnish-Russian border at checkpoints of Salla and Raja Jooseppi.

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