It is part of the concerns of the Sami people, the indigenous people of Finland, because they are worried about the diminishing opportunities to gain more self-government in their ancestral lands.
In Finland, the Sámi are represented by the Sámi Assembly (Sámediggi), a constitutionally recognized advisory body. However, the reform of the Sámi Assembly, which regulates the electoral rights and functions of the Sámi Assembly, has been constantly demanded.
The article begins with the plight of the residents of Utsjoki, the northernmost municipality in the European Union, who long for salmon, an essential food made up of tradition and the city’s luxury. Salmon fishing has been prohibited in Tenojoki, which acts as a natural border between Finland and Norway, for the past four years. The ban has had a traumatic effect on the municipality, which is the only place in Finland where the Sámi, Europe’s last indigenous people, form a majority.
The scarcity of Utsjoki salmon is due to the increase in temperature caused by climate change. The article also emphasizes how prominent members of Finland’s indigenous peoples, supported by historians, jurists and various international organizations, have demanded the reform of the Sámi assemblies, which regulate the active and passive voting rights of the parliament.
“If [the law] has not been edited, there will come a time when the Finns will take over [of the chamber],” Leo Aikio, the vice-president of the city of Inari, Sámedigg, told El País. Without changes in the law, there are fears that non-Sámi people could gain control of the chamber, which would jeopardize the wishes and interests of the true indigenous Sámi people.