HELSINKI – The Prime Minister of Finland was the subject of sustained criticism on Tuesday after it was revealed that she remained outside dancing until the early hours of the weekend when she knew she had been exposed to Covid-19.
Sanna Marin, 36, apologized on Monday after a gossip magazine published photos of her attending a Helsinki nightclub on Saturday night until nearly 4 a.m., hours after her Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto has tested positive for the coronavirus.
“My husband and I… had been out to eat, shopping in town, seeing friends and also hanging out. [enjoying] the evening and the nightlife, ”the Social Democratic leader wrote on Facebook.
She added that an official told her that coronavirus guidelines did not require her to self-isolate, despite having come into contact with an infected person.
“I should have used better judgment and rechecked the advice given to me. I’m so sorry I didn’t understand that I had to do this, ”Marin wrote. A poll commissioned by the MTV3 television channel found that two-thirds of those polled thought Marin’s night was a “big mistake.”
Opposition parties also criticized Marin for potentially violating official Covid guidelines and for missing a subsequent text warning him to self-isolate.
Finance Minister Annika Saarikko of the Center Party, a partner of the ruling coalition, did not directly criticize Marin.
However, Saarikko told the Helsingin Sanomat newspaper that she was “glad to be home” when she received the text message to isolate herself, adding that she had canceled her plans for the next day.
Finland has suffered some of the lowest virus incidences in Europe throughout the pandemic, recording more than 196,000 cases and 1,384 deaths in the country of 5.5 million.
However, infections have now reached an all-time high, with 308 new cases per 100,000 population in the past fifteen weeks. The country has also registered eight cases of the new Omicron variant.
On Monday, Seiska magazine reported that Marin was seen at the Butchers nightclub in Helsinki, dancing with friends until nearly 4 a.m.
Marin, who became the world’s youngest prime minister when she was appointed in 2019, has previously been the target of criticism of parties at her official residence and social media posts in which she poses with friends or appears to promote. fashion accessories.
In October, she responded to the reviews with an Instagram post citing a Finnish pop song that read: “Hey boom-boom-boom, put some ice cream in your hat and chill it.”
“I’m a representative of the younger generation,” she later told broadcaster Yle, “and yes, that is reflected in the way I do my job and the way I live,” Marin said. —AFP
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