Former prime minister Alexander Stubb will become the new Finnish president. His opponent, former foreign minister Pekka Haavisto, conceded defeat in today’s second round of presidential elections. According to the final results, Stubb received 51.6 percent of the vote, while Haavisto received 48.4 percent of the vote. Voter turnout was 70.7 percent, the DPA agency reported.
Alexander Stubb at his campaign reception in Helsinki, Finland on Sunday 11 February 2024.
The main task of the winner of the election will be to lead the foreign and security policy of this Nordic country, which joined NATO last year in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Fifty-five-year-old conservative Stubb, like his opponent from the Green Party, is considered a pro-European politician. Both are also strong supporters of Ukraine in its war with Russia.
Stubb called winning the presidential election the greatest honor of his life. “I feel calm, humbled, but at the same time, of course, I am extremely happy and grateful that Finns voted in such large numbers and that I can serve as the President of Finland,” he added.
An experienced and competent person
Haavisto congratulated his opponent. “We believe that Finland is now getting a good president,” he declared. “Alexander Stubb is up for the job,” he added.
The winner of the elections at the beginning of March will replace the current president Sauli Niinistö, who, according to the Finnish constitution, could not run again after two six-year terms of office.
Stubb is a supporter of close cooperation within NATO, including allowing the transfer of nuclear weapons through Finnish territory and the permanent stationing of some NATO troops in Finland. Haavisto advocates maintaining the ban on the presence of nuclear weapons on Finnish territory and considers the continued deployment of NATO troops in Finland unnecessary under the current situation.
Stubb took first place in the first round of the presidential election, receiving 27.2 percent of the vote. Haavisto received 25.8 percent of the votes in the first round.