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Helsinki Security Forum 2022 has come to a close

The inaugural Helsinki Security Forum has come to a close. The event brought together decision-makers and experts to address pressing topics concerning international security, this year with the theme of Northern European Security Redone.

The first day of HSF offered in-depth analysis on the return of war to Europe and the transformation of the international security order. The session was opened by the President of the Republic of Finland, Sauli Niinistö, the Under-secretary of State for Foreign and Security policy at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, Kai Sauer and Director of the Finnish Institute of International Affairs, Mika Aaltola.

The opening panel addressed the ongoing war in Ukraine in a panel entitled “Major War Returns to Europe”, with panelists Pavlo Klimkin (Former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine), Anna Wieslander (Director for Northern Europe of the Atlantic Council), Andrew Michta (Dean of the College of International and Security Studies at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies) bringing forth their views on an ever pressing topic. The panel was moderated by Charly Salonius-Pasternak, Leading Researcher at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs.

The widescale implications of the war in Ukraine were highlighted in nearly all of the discussions of the conference. A system-transforming conflict, the war will shape the European security architecture for decades to come, Michta noted. The war has extensive and long-term implications not just for Ukraine, but for the entire international community, and Russia relations must be carefully reconsidered globally.

The speakers stressed that particularly at these challenging times, maintaining transatlantic unity and facilitating cooperation is essential. As President Niinistö stated: “One thing is certain. In the coming months, our resilience will be severely tested. Whatever Russia does next, however difficult the energy crisis turns out to be, unity is our response. In Finland, in Europe, in the world”.

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You can watch the raw livestream recordings of HSF 2022 on the Youtube page of the Finnish Institute of International Affairs https://www.youtube.com/c/FIIA_fi/playlists

Helsinki Security Forum will return in 2023 when participants will again discuss a pressing theme of international security. Save the date: Helsinki Security Forum 2023, September 29 – October 1.

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