Global Leaders Forum: Antti Kaikkonen, Minister of Defense of Finland
December 9, 2019
Rachel Ellehuss: Good morning, everyone. And thank you for coming out to CSIS on what is a pretty dreary Washington day. I want to keep us on schedule, so I’ll turn it over to the minister in a moment. But we’re so happy that Minister Kaikkonen could make the time to see us, even though the government is in caretaker status. He’s still willing to share with us his vision for Finnish defense, which I believe one of its strengths is the continuity but also the adaptation. But you’ll tell us more about that, and then we’ll – you’ll join me over here for some questions and answers. Thank you.
Antti Kaikkonen: Yes, thank you. Thank you very much. Distinguished chair, ladies and gentlemen, I just flew in from the west coast, where I had the privilege of the attending the Reagan National Defense Forum. I must say the discussions in panels and during breaks, they were very useful. Great event, I have to say. Also really pleased to have this opportunity to say a few remarks concerning the security situation in Northern Europe and the future of Finnish defense here. My staff has organized me a quite busy schedule during my stay here in Washington, D.C. I am grateful that we were able to fix this event at CSIS. And it is an honor to be part of the Global Leaders Forum. Thank you.
Before I start, I need to say some words about the current political situation in Finland. Maybe some of you have heard about the situation going on right now in Finland. So the government resigned last week and actually there’s now the process of nominating the new government in Finland. And so right now it is caretaking government, and I’m the minister of defense of this caretaking government at the moment. So that means in practice I cannot say very strong political opinions here or make new openings. So if you were waiting for a very spectacular show here, you might be disappointed. But anyway, some words of the Finnish defense in a very Finnish way.
It seems – actually, when I woke up this morning I heard that my party, center party, has had a meeting this morning and that they made their suggestion for the forthcoming ministers for the next government. And I was pleased to see my name on the list also, so. So most probably I will be the minister of defense after tomorrow when the parliament has discussion about this issue. But we will wait until tomorrow. But right now, it looks like this. We have quite a special government actually globally because we have five parties right now, and all the leaders of those five parties are female. So that’s quite unique in the world.
And Sanna Marin, who will be the next prime minister, is 34 years old. And she’s going to be the youngest prime minister in the world also. So that’s another interesting detail. More than 60 percent of the members of the new government – it seems like more than 60 percent or about 60 percent, will be female also. So I’m representing minority. This happens when you travel for a few days to U.S. Maybe it’s better if I bring in my speech now. Going any further.
Yes. Now, to the topic at hand. There has been a lot of discussion about the changes in the security landscape of Europe recently. And of course, it is not only Europe that has witnessed these changes. You know these changes very well here in the United States as well. But I will focus on Europe in my remarks, as it is the epicenter of our security and defense analysis in Finland.
The European security architecture is witnessing some new challenges. Or, to be more precise, the challenges in Europe that we face today are ones that we have not encountered in a few decades. During the post-Cold War era, much of the Western, also European, security and defense focus has been centered on the so-called new security threats. Also, defense has been redefined during the post-Cold War era, starting in the 1990s and followed by some 15 years of this millennium, European defense focus has centered more and more on multinational expeditionary military operations somewhere out there. In many parts of Europe, defense of territory or deterrence has been, so to say, out of vogue.
Not for us. From the Finnish perspective, the main reason to maintain national defense capabilities throughout the post-Cold War era has been deterrence. The prevention of military threats from emerging towards our territory, population, and the sovereignty of the state. So, ladies and gentlemen, there has been a change in the security situation in Europe, and more broadly – and more broadly during the last five years. The transformative moments of the present time have been Russia’s annexation of the Crimean Peninsula and the ongoing war in Ukraine. Ever since 2014, we have witnessed raised tensions between Russia and the West. This is the most significant fact influencing the European security environment.
But at the same time, this kind of more competitive security situation is just a kind of condition in world affairs that our defense has been maintained and developed for. With all the globalization and expeditionary operations during the last decades, our military has been trained and equipped to prevent military attacks from arising against us. And if that fails, to be able to use high-quality and high-quantity forces to repel the attack. The Finnish security and defense policy is to market by a considerable amount of continuity. This should not be a surprise to anyone.
After all, defense planning and military capability development necessitate a long-term perspective. In the realm of defense, nothing significant happens in a year or two. There are not quick fixes. You can do actually only one thing quickly, and that is getting rid of existing military capabilities. I want to highlight this continuity does not equal stagnation. Openness and the ability to innovate remain the central tenets of the Finnish defense policy.
In the near future, we will continue on the path that I just outlined. During the next decade, we will procure a new navy squadron and replace the current fleet of more than 60 F-18 Hornet fighters with new ones. These two projects will be funded with additional defense outlays. This will increase our defense budget by 30 percent throughout the 2020s, starting 2021. This will take us above the 2 percent GDP marker that everybody’s talking about these days.
And I have to say the investment to new fighters is the biggest single item on my agenda in the – in the next – forthcoming years. We have right now five different options to replace the old F-18 fighters. They are two American, F-35 and Super Hornets; and three European options, so it’s Rafale, Eurofighter, and Gripen from Sweden. And we have a very careful process where we are trying to find and finding the best of these for our needs. Actually, these five different fighters, we are taking those to Finland in the beginning of next year, in January and February, for more than one week each to practice – test these fighters in Finnish conditions, Finnish winter conditions, and see that they keep what they promise – see that they keep what they – what they promise. And this process will go on all the next year with different type of testing and processing, evaluating these fighters, and the final decisions – final decision, which will be the one is going to that – it will be made the year 2021.
It will be a big, big investment, approx. 10 billion – 10 billion euros. It’s the maximum we are going to put, and the final price will be – will be decided at the end of next year. But this is a big issue, of course, for our small country, with a population of 5.5 million. Actually, it’s the – it’s the – actually, the biggest investment of our history.
Ladies and gentlemen, a month ago – a month ago Secretary Esper noted that artificial intelligence won’t change the nature of war, but it will change the character of war. I think this is well put and it helps us understand what we are dealing with. When we look at the different agenda of the 2020s and 2030s, we must think more about digitalization and new technologies like 5G, artificial intelligence, automated systems, space, and cyber.
Concerning digitalization and new technologies, we in Europe are behind the United States today. I think we could learn from the U.S. I also think we must cooperate more. I would like to give an example. The Pentagon is working closer with the Silicon Valley and there is a new defense innovation unit which aims to accelerate the use of commercial technology for national security.
As part of the ongoing Finnish EU presidency, I hosted European defense ministers in Helsinki two months ago. We invited startup leaders from the private sector to challenge us on artificial intelligence. Digitalization has been one priority of the Finnish EU presidency. We have also worked hard to boost transatlantic cooperation and look for a compromise to ensure that third-state participation within – to ensure third-state participation within this goal. But new technologies will not replace the traditional military threats. But yet, we must be ready for advances in military technology.
So to conclude on the Finnish perspective to defense, we focus on real large-scale military capabilities for deterrence, and if deterrence fails for warfighting. From our perspective, the requirements of the security environment and the character of future warfare necessitate the development of high-quality and high-quantity military capabilities.
However, this in itself will not suffice. We need also to develop the will of the population to defend the nation. Without this, we cannot succeed. Even the best of military systems or defense doctrines will not get us very far without the support of the people. Similarly, we need to strengthen our national defense capabilities within the national defense cooperation.
In today’s world new technologies, the rising cost of military systems, and advanced training opportunities push likeminded states to cooperate. We in Finland are benefiting from this. Active defense cooperation is one key aspect of our defense policy. From our perspective, transatlantic cooperation is an important aspect of European security. In addition, bilateral defense cooperation between Finland and the United States is important. It has been broadened during the last years.
Sweden is also an important cooperation partner for us. We have – we have widened and deepened our defense cooperation very quickly over the past few years. Together, we are also cooperating with the United States in the form of trilateral defense cooperation. As a matter of fact, tomorrow I am going to meet Secretary of Defense Esper together with my Swedish counterpart, Peter Hultqvist.
So, ladies and gentlemen, for us in Finland having good military capabilities, the support of the population, and active defense cooperation in tandem form – in tandem form a solid foundation for meeting the future defense requirements.
To conclude, I would like to emphasize that when we are dealing with defense issues we need to integrate both continuity and change into our perspective. The main task of the Finnish defense forces in the 2020s and 2030s will be the military defense of Finland. Still, we, too, must adapt to the change in security environment and changes in the character of war.
During the last 100 years, there has always been a transatlantic response to any significant security threat. We, Europeans and the United States, must continue to cooperate. The emerging great-power competitions and changing character of war demand it. Thank you.
Rachel Ellehuus: Thank you so much, Mr. Minister, for that introduction, and for reinforcing for me what I think is true, is that the best deterrent is a strong defense. And clearly, that’s a model that Finland has followed not just since 2014, but for many decades before. And in many ways you’re a model for NATO as a partner and the European Union.
I wanted to go a little bit more deeply into some of the aspects that you mentioned. Certainly, you talked about capabilities. You also talked about resilience and the importance of bringing society along. You talked about the importance of adaptation and the importance of international cooperation.
So maybe to start with, capabilities. In particular when I think of Finland one of the areas that the United States certainly relies on Finland to look after is the High North and your corner of the High North. We’ve seen increasing Russian military activity there. We’ve seen increasing Chinese economic interest there. How has Finland responded? And how concerned are you about the challenges that we’re seeing in what has been characterized as a low-tension environment?
Antti Kaikkonen: Well, yes, there has been more and more activity in the Arctic region, and we are following very carefully what happens there. For example, there has just been a very – quite big Russian military exercise in the Arctic region. Of course, we are following everything what happens in the region. And, well, I’d say Finnish defense forces and Finnish defense – I’d say we don’t have some special Arctic capability because we are, in the whole, an Arctic nation, and everything is actually Arctic capability. So it is easy to work in these conditions for us. We have very good knowledge of this region and special details, how to work in the region.
Rachel Ellehuus: That’s certainly different than – I think the U.S. military learned a harsh lesson in some of their training up in Norway or in Trident Juncture about what it means to operate in a cold weather environment. So we have quite a bit to learn from you there.
Moving on maybe then to resilience, because I’m always impressed about your whole-of-society approach to defense and how – I think when I was in Finland a few months ago I saw a promotional video where professional hockey players, professional soccer players, and professional punk rock musicians had all done their military service. How do you think this helps build resilience in society? And what are the most important elements of doing that? We have a lot to learn from you in this regard.
Antti Kaikkonen: Thank you. And thank you for visiting Finland.
Rachel Ellehuus: It was wonderful.
Antti Kaikkonen: Finland has – yes, we have a long tradition of this kind of comprehensive security model, which means that the whole society are involved and very good cooperation between different authorities and ministries as well. But, let’s say, for us a good education is very important. And I’d say one ground for this Finnish education system has awarded one of the best in the world. And let’s say we’ve put lately quite good focus for people’s capabilities to read media not to believe everything they see on social media. That’s very important. We also have very good and responsible media in Finland itself. Freedom of press is one important issue here. And I’d say Finnish journalists are working with high ethics also. Yes, there’s many, many, many things which make this whole package work quite well.
Rachel Ellehuus: Those are all excellent elements to point out.
You didn’t speak about – you spoke about international cooperation and the partnership with Sweden, but also the United States. But as a member of the EU and partner of NATO, there’s also the aspect of EU-NATO cooperation. In the presidency, Finland has stressed the importance of that relationship. Can you say a few words possibly about where you think NATO-EU cooperation is going well, and where maybe we have future work to do – or, maybe some new areas where we might work together?
Antti Kaikkonen: No new areas as –
Rachel Ellehuus: No new areas. We stick with the 57 that we’ve already agreed.
Antti Kaikkonen: Yes, yes, yes. As the caretaking minister no new areas. Maybe next time I will be there.
Rachel Ellehuus: Oh, and the – I remember now. Got it.
Antti Kaikkonen: But, yes, it’s very – it’s very – this cooperation is very important. I would say it’s vital to have good cooperation. Of course, I have noticed quite colorful discussion around NATO lately. And but the fact anyway is that we have more cooperation than ever before. And that is a good thing. Two example I could mention, military mobility. We have reached good solutions and good results in that region. But we have to maintain this cooperation all the time. It has great use to every participant.
Rachel Ellehuus: And we’re very – from a U.S. perspective I should thank Finland for doing your best to argue for third-party inclusion in EDF and PESCO. And I’m hopeful that as both those efforts get off the ground pragmatism will prevail, and we’ll be able to move forward and cooperate where it matters. So we’ll keep our eye on this, but thanks to Finland for being a voice of reason there.
Antti Kaikkonen: Thank you. Thank you. And thank you for U.S. for good cooperation. And my staff did their best.
Rachel Ellehuus: Yes.
Antti Kaikkonen: But sometimes it’s not enough. Very good try, anyway.
Rachel Ellehuus: That’s true. How about – you mentioned sort of some, I don’t want to say new areas, but you mentioned some things that we consider new areas in defense. So the emergence of – you know, the challenges of artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies. How do you think those will impact the ability of Finland’s military to operate in the future? Do you see it more as a benefit that could make it easier to operate? Or is it more of a challenge?
Antti Kaikkonen: Probably it’s more of a challenge for all of us, and discussing is just about the beginning, I’d say. This is quite new. Finland is a high technology country, so we have quite good knowledge of these issues. And we put a lot of resources on these issues in the near future as well. We need also international cooperation. For example, I think we need a common approach to 5G in the European Union and also transatlantic discussion is also important. This is a very wide range of new big issues here. And we have to focus very much on these in the near future.
Rachel Ellehuus: So at the – many people are probably following – at the leaders’ meeting NATO agreed to some language on, I would say, left and right limits on, in particular, telecommunications and infrastructure when it comes to sort of Chinese influence and the impact on NATO operations. Do you think that the U.S. and Europe are moving closer together in these areas on, for example, acknowledging the threat to 5G?
Antti Kaikkonen: Well, I’m not sure about that, but that should – I see that would be a good goal anyway.
Rachel Ellehuus: Data privacy. So you have a few weeks left in your EU presidency to wrap those up.
I want to leave a little bit of time for audience questions, but I have one more that you didn’t speak about, but I know is a priority increasingly globally, which is climate. And I can imagine that Finland is feeling firsthand a lot of the challenges of climate. From a Ministry of Defense perspective, do you see this as a security threat? And is there a role for the ministries of defense or the military to play in managing this?
Antti Kaikkonen: Climate change is one of the biggest issues of our time, or perhaps the biggest issue of our time. And it might also affect, for example, the causes of conflicts in the future and the circumstances we are working in the future. I mentioned in my speech that I hosted a EU defense minister meeting in Helsinki in August. That’s actually the first time ever we put climate change on the defense minister’s agenda. And they had a good discussion. And it was a start for something on the European Union level to tackle this issue.
Also in the military field probably we are not the ones who will solve this problem, but we have to do our part here also. And for example, military is a great user of energy. And we have to – have to do something also to address these issues. But as I mentioned, it might cause – it might change or affect causes of conflicts in the near future. So that’s one point also. I think we should globally fight against climate change more than – more than we do nowadays. But it’s mainly another minister’s duty. But I think we should do something also in our posts.
Rachel Ellehuus: That’s good. I think Department of Defense, at least here, is taking it very seriously and, in many ways, driving and forcing solutions, even if we don’t have agreement on the way forward in other areas. So I appreciate that.
I want to give an opportunity for audience questions. There are mics in the back. If you just raise your hand, Krista and Deanna will come around. And please introduce yourself and say where you’re from. And remember, no new areas until tomorrow.
Here in the front.
Scott Davis: Good morning, sir. Thank you for those very informative words. My name is Scott Davis from Lockheed Martin in Finland.
And I wanted to ask about Finnish-Swedish military cooperation. As you noted, it’s gotten both wider and deeper, markedly, in the last few years. So my question is, where do you see the possible end state of that? Could it go so far as an alliance including mutual defense?
Antti Kaikkonen: What can I say?
Rachel Ellehuus: What’s the – what is the existing practice? To what extent do you now have maybe mutual access agreements or things of that sort?
Antti Kaikkonen: Yes, we have mutual agreements and we’ve taken steps forward in the – in the past years. We have, for example, a lot of common access ICs and a lot else.
I see that there are more possibilities to come. It’s better that I won’t speculate what would be the end state. But anyway, there’s strong support for this cooperation both in Finland and in Sweden, both among politicians and I’d say both ordinary people. Finland and Sweden are in many ways very similar countries – not identical, but a lot of similarities in our history, in our culture, in our way of life. Both are a member of European Union, but neither is a member of NATO. There’s a lot in common, and we have a common interest when it comes – what comes to defense issues as well.
I have been minister of defense for only about half a year now, but I think I have met Swedish Defense Minister Mr. Hultqvist about 10 times already. So that tells something about how deep is the cooperation also on the political level. We’ve been preparing the next steps of our cooperation, and it seems like we have something to tell about this with Mr. Hultqvist before the end of this year.
Rachel Ellehuus: I can offer that from a Department of Defense perspective we used to have bilateral conversations and memorandum of agreement on the future of our cooperation with independent Sweden-U.S., Finland-U.S., and then saw the utility in making that a trilateral, which is exactly what you’re doing during your time here in Washington. So from a U.S. perspective, it’s something that we would encourage, so.
I saw some other hands. In the front. I’m having difficulty seeing because of the lights. John, I’ll take you next.
John Heffern: Yeah, sorry. Hi. John Heffern. Thank you, Mr. Minister. Retired Foreign Service officer, now at – oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to front-cut you. I’m sorry.
Questioner: No, that’s OK.
Rachel Ellehuus: I can see – now that I go like this, I see one, two, three. So let’s do it like that.
John Heffern: All right. I’m sorry. Retired Foreign Service officer, now at Georgetown.
My first – I’ve got a quick request and a quick question. Maybe the question is not so quick.
The request: Please tell the new prime minister that she can’t have her ambassador back. Her ambassador has to stay in Washington. She cannot get her back. We need her here in Washington, so she can’t have her back.
Rachel Ellehuus: Hear, hear.
John Heffern: The question. So I wanted to ask a bit about values. And I wanted your thoughts, sir, about whether – what are the long-term dangers when a country like the United States sets a bad example in terms of war crimes? What are the long-term dangers from those examples? Thank you.
Antti Kaikkonen: Sorry, I couldn’t quite catch it. Could you repeat?
John Heffern: What do – what do you see as the long-term danger when a country like the United States sets bad examples in international humanitarian law on war crimes? When we set a bad example, what are the long-term dangers of that?
Antti Kaikkonen: A-ha. OK, OK. This is a good, good question, but I think this is one of those questions as a minister – as a caretaking minister it is more sort of a speculation that it’s better that I won’t even try to answer for that. I’m very sorry about that, but I hope you understand.
But I’ll note what you said about ambassador. So that message, that’s fine.
Rachel Ellehuus: OK. In the front here, please.
Pascale Siegel: Hi. My name is Pascale Siegel. I am a political risk analyst at Ankura Consulting, and I have an easier question for you.
I would like you to explain to us what Finland is doing in terms of cybersecurity. And where do you see the work that needs to be done? Where do you want the emphasis to be looking forward?
Antti Kaikkonen: Well, we are putting quite much resources on cyber. I think we’ve hired plenty of personnel to our military during past years, and we’ll do more and put also money on this. And one important thing is that we just got new legislation on intelligence here which gives much better tools for our military to work on this area. So these are the, well, let’s say, key points here. We have to understand the changes here and the big, big need for these kind of investments. And we’ll be – we’ll be doing our job here.
Of course, when talking about cyber and intelligence, it’s better that I won’t tell about the details more.
Rachel Ellehuus: And then I saw two questions over here in the corner.
Karin Shuey: Thank you. I’m Karin Shuey with the Estonian American National Council.
And I was just wondering if you could say a few words about the relationship – the security relationship between Finland and Estonia.
Antti Kaikkonen: OK. Estonia is a very good, good friend for us also in so many – so many ways. I have met also minister of defense of Estonia several times Mr. Jüri Luik. We have some – of course, some bilateral cooperation, but especially Nordic political cooperation is important for here. And then we cooperate in different European structures concerning defense, also. And there’s also many kind of practical cooperation between our militaries. I’d say we have a good and fruitful cooperation, and there’s a need for this kind of deep and active cooperation.
And I respect Mr. Luik also very, very much. He has good experiences – good experience, and a very good colleague for me.
Paz Magat: Good morning, sir. Paz Magat with the Halifax International Security Forum, and I run the Peace with Women Fellowship for senior women military leaders.
The issue of conscription and women has been at the forefront of some of the headlines in Finland, and I’d love to hear some of your thoughts about how Finland is looking at staying prepared and diversifying their forces in a way that will make them stronger and more inclusive.
Antti Kaikkonen: And could you also repeat?
Paz Magat: Stronger and more inclusive, so including the whole of society. You know, we see women at the top levels of government. I’d love to hear your thoughts on how they can serve in the military, as well, at the top levels.
Antti Kaikkonen: How think I – how think I be able –
Paz Magat: How can the Ministry of Defense be more capable or be more prepared by being more gender-inclusive at the highest levels of leadership in the military itself?
Antti Kaikkonen: A-ha. OK, OK, OK. I hope I got the – got the point or the question. Sorry, my bad English.
Yes, the questions of equality are very important to Finland in many ways. It has been possible for female to do the service in the military since 1990s. And we have this conscription service in Finland, which means that in practice that all the young men must do the service. Of course, if there are health issues then you don’t have to do it. We have quite the military in Finland. It’s about 280,000 in reserve. So that is quite big in European level.
We have a good feeling of how those women who do the service do their job. They are getting very good results. Many of them go to the leader exercise and leader education in the army. And I’d say quite soon we will have first female generals also in Finland. It might take some years, but in 2020s we will see that also.
Well, one detail which has been – arised a lot of – a lot of interest in Finland is that we are going to check out is it possible that during the military service – during the military service men and women stay in the same cabins also, during the military service. It’s the practice, as far as I know, in many Nordic countries, but not in Finland yet. But we’ll see how it works during next year. There’s a lot of examples of what we are doing, but here are some.
Rachel Ellehuus: Yes. In the front with the glasses.
Andrew Zander: Hi. Andrew Zander. I’m with Thomson Reuters Government Division.
I was just hoping to ask you what are your thoughts on Finland’s future involvement with Nordic Defense Cooperation, Nordefco? Do you foresee it to continue to be in the voluntary nature or more enhanced and have more statutory and regulations surrounding the cooperation agreement? Thank you.
Antti Kaikkonen: We just had 10 years anniversary of Nordefco, the Nordic Defense Cooperation just two weeks ago. Ministers of defense gathered in Stockholm. They are good results in Nordefco, and more to come, but of course there are some challenges. Not big challenges, but anyway of course the situation is a little bit different because some of countries are members of NATO and some aren’t. But that hasn’t been a big obstacle for cooperation anyway. We’ve found a lot of areas to cooperate. And we are going to deepen it also in the near future. We have a plan for that.
Maybe one example of this cooperation is we have kind of hotline now among five ministries. We tested it already. So if there’s a need for consultation it is possible to do it hotline, with screen, among these five ministries. It's not a big thing, but anyway good example of this good cooperation we have. And there’s still more to come. But we discussed earlier about this Finnish-Swedish cooperation. It will go deeper than the Nordefco cooperation, but Nordefco has also good support among the Nordic countries, which are all quite similar countries. And we are a very good family there in Northern Europe. So we’ll get news from that sector also in the near future.
Rachel Ellehuus: OK, I think I see two more. And then I think we’re nearly out of time. So let’s take in the front and then in the back, please.
Walt Peritamanen: Hello. I’m Walt Peritamanen (ph). I’m a trade consultant here in D.C.
I was wondering if you could talk more about – you mentioned AI and emerging technologies – if you could speak more to what the Finnish Defense Ministry’s doing either in terms of technology integration with emerging technologies, or technology security.
Antti Kaikkonen: We’re putting more and more focus on this also in the military, but actually also we need more cooperation – what we need is more cooperation with private sector and academia as well. And there’s still a lot of possibilities to not only nationally – international cooperation is here very important also. And we have also a European project here concerning these issues. And certainly we need also transatlantic cooperation here. I say the big thing which has not been done yet is really this cooperation with private sector, because there’s so much good knowledge in private sector. And we just have to find a ways how to – how to cooperate and how to get use for it for our military as well.
Rachel Ellehuus: And is that mainly because the private sector has other business and they’re not necessarily interested in spending the time to create the information flow from private sector to military, or are there other obstacles?
Antti Kaikkonen: Well, I don’t know if there are obstacles. Their focus has just been in markets, I suppose. I suppose. But as far as I know, there are interests also to military cooperation. So I’m looking for this – what this can afford in the near future.
Rachel Ellehuus: Great. And I think there was one more question in the back, and then we’ll probably have to let you go to the busy – the busy day that – two days that await you.
Jeff Seldin: Thank you very much. Jeff Seldin with VOA.
You mentioned earlier the need to develop the will of the people to defend Finland. To what extent are you seeing any campaigns or efforts to degrade that will? And where are those efforts coming from?
Antti Kaikkonen: We’ve seen some. We’ve seen some, but I’d say not so much in Finland. Perhaps more in some other countries. But some in Finland also. And that’s why it’s important to make the people aware of these issues. It’s better that right now I won’t speculate on the possible sources of this influence.
Rachel Ellehuus: All right. Well, with that, I wanted to thank you for coming out here and answering what were a lot of questions, a lot of good questions and tough questions, particularly when you’re in a sort of limbo position yourself. But we’re happy you’ve been re-nominated. We’re happy to see a strong Cabinet with a lot of diversity. And what we always expect from Finland, and know we will get, is a high level of responsibility and continuity. And so it looks like that’s the path we’re on. So thank you again for coming and sharing your remarks with us.
Antti Kaikkonen: Thank you very much. It’s been a great pleasure to be here. Thank you so much.