President Sauli Niinistö and his Latvian counterpart Edgars Rinkēvičs on Thursday met in Helsinki and discussed various issues including bilateral relations and security in the Baltic Sea region and Europe, said the President Office in a press release.
Speaking at a joint press conference after the meeting, Niinistö also highlighted the importance of border security, as both countries share a border with Russia.
Furthermore, both countries have experience with migration issues, Latvia currently at the border with Belarus, and Finland from 2015.
“We can exchange experiences, and it is now very important for us to learn how these situations should be handled and how we can keep our borders secure,” said Niinistö, emphasizing the importance of preparedness for hybrid threats.
Niinistö said there were many good reasons to get together and exchange opinions, noting that these opinions are not very different from one another.
“First of all, our bilateral relations are on a very solid, good basis and they continue to develop,” Niinistö said.
With respect to the situation in Ukraine, Niinistö stressed the importance of continuing support. “We are both fully committed to this work and we encourage others to do the same.”
Rinkēvičs also met with Prime Minister Petteri Orpo and Deputy Speaker of Parliament Paula Risikko during his visit to Finland.
It was Rinkēvičs’ first visit to Finland as President of Latvia. The previous Latvian president, Egils Levits, made a working visit to Finland in 2019.
President Niinistö last visited Latvia for the meeting of Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) country leaders in December 2022.