Man Throws Liquid at Finnish Finance Minister

A Japanese macaque drinks water from a hot spring at a valley in Yamanouchi town. (Reuters Photo/Yuya Shino)

By : Jussi Rosendahl | on 10:55 AM December 01, 2015
Category : International, World

Helsinki. A man walked up to Finland's finance minister, Alexander Stubb, and threw liquid on him on Monday in a gesture of anger at comments Stubb made about a government bill on securities holdings but which he later retracted as wrong.

Stubb was meeting people in a cafeteria in Tampere when the man approached and threw what appeared to be a soft drink on him, calling him "liar" and "cutter", local media reported.

The man was detained by police but was freed pending possible subsequent charges.

Stubb, a member of the centre-right government which plans to cut spending and workers' benefits, last week said that 90 percent of experts and authorities supported the government's plan to reform the system in which investors hold securities.

But he later acknowledged that he had made a mistake and used a figure "off the top of my head" to support his case.

The incident sparked calls from the political opposition for a parliament hearing on the episode, though Prime minister Juha Sipila says he still backs his minister.

"It is ok to challenge. It is ok to demand arguments and disagree. Let's still respect each others' inviolability," Stubb said later in his Twitter account.

In August, two men shot through the windows of Stubb's private home with an air rifle in the middle of the night, prompting a government review of ministerial security.

The government planned to reform the Finnish securities custody by allowing investors to hold securities through an anonymous nominee register.

The plan has caused public anger at risks of increased tax avoidance against a background of austerity and rising unemployment in the recession-hit country.


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