Sanna Marin at party: who is Finland prime minister - topless picture at residence and reaction explained
A topless photograph taken at Sanna Marin’s official residence has caused controversy in Finland, one week after a leaked video showing her partying was criticised
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Finnish prime minister Sanna Marin has apoligsed after a photo of two topless women taken in her official residence, days after she was criticised for partying.
The Finnish leader conducted a drug test, for which she tested negative, after opposition politicians criticised a video of her dancing wildly was leaked online.
Ms Marin, 36, was seen in the video dancing and appeared to be drunk.
The Finnish prime minister has defended her behaviour and insisted that she was not partaking in anything illegal at the event.
Ms Marin’s partying controversy has rumbled on now, after the topless images - which did not feature Ms Marin - were posted to social media.
Here’s everything you need to know about Sanna Marin and the situation.
Who is Sanna Marin?
Sanna Marin was elected as prime minister of Finland in 2019.
She is the leader of the Social Democratic Party of Finland, a centre-left political party.
Ms Marin replaced former prime minister Antti Rinne after he resigned over a postal strike controversy.
Upon taking up office, Ms Marin became Finland’s youngest prime minister at 34 and one fo the youngest world leaders.
What did Sanna Marin say about topless picture?
A photograph of two women, which has since been deleted, was posted on social media by model and influencer Sabina Särkkä.
Ms Särkkä and another unnamed woman can be seen in the image kissing and lifting up their tops, while being covered with a sign which reads “Finland”.
The prime minister confirmed that the picture was taken inside Kesäranta, the Finnish prime minister’s official residence, after Ms Marin invited a group of friends back after attending the Ruisrock music festival on 8 July.
She said of the image: “I think the picture is not appropriate, I apologise for it. Such a picture should not have been taken.”
Ms Marin also confirmed that all of the guests in the official residence that evening had their names handed to security teams, and all security measures were followed.
What happened in the video of Sanna Marin partying?
In the leaked video, Ms Marin could be seen dancing. The prime minister was with friends, which included some high-profile Finnish celebrities.
Reports also alleged that the Finnish prime minister, who is married to former Finnish football player Markus Räikkönen, danced “intimately” with several men during the party and sat in the laps of two of the men attending.
Finnish tabloid outlet Seiska reported that the group of revellers, including Ms Marin, also moved onto a club and restaurant where celebrations continued until 4:30am.
A source told the newspaper: “Sanna danced intimately with at least three different men.
“She also sat on the laps of two different men. She placed her hand next to one man and he held her gently by the arm.
“Sanna was acting like she was part of his entourage. She was behaving like a single woman in her twenties. It was hard to believe she was married.”
Ms Marin has been known to enjoy partying, having been pictured at several different music festivals.
It has led to trouble in the past, with the leader having to apologise last year after she came into contact with a Covid-19 case while clubbing.
What has been the reaction to the video?
Finnish media has reported on the video with high interest, justifying the publication of the video, which was believed to have come from a private Instagram Story, as in the public’s interest.
Opposition parties have said that her behaviour seen in the video is inappropriate and not fitting of the country’s leader.
Mikko Kärnä, a Centre party MP, called for the prime minister to be voluntary drug tested, after an accusation that the term “flour gang” - in relation to cocaine or amphetamines - could be heard in the recording.
He said: “The people are entitled to expect this from their prime minister.”
His calls were echoed by opposition party leader Riikka Purra, who also asked that the prime minister takes a voluntary drug test.
However, many of Ms Marin’s colleagues have come to her defence.
Antti Lindtman, a Social Democrat MP, said that he had a “lot of sympathy” for the backlash Ms Marin has received, adding: “I see nothing to write home about.”
In response to the partying controversy, women around the world have posted their solidarity with the prime minister, posting images and videos of them partying to social media under alongside #SolidaritywithSanna and #LetsDance.
One social media user wrote: “We should all dance a little more! I stand in solidarity with Sanna.”
Spanish politician Iratxe García Pérez tweeted: “How shocking!!! A young politician who does her job and enjoys her private life... Why can’t a young woman have fun? I can’t stand gender double standards.”
What has Sanna Marin said about the partying video?
Ms Marin has addressed the controversy in Finnish media, telling reporters that she knew she was being filmed at the party, but was disappointed that the video had been released to the public.
She added: "I danced, sang, and partied - perfectly legal things. And I’ve never been in a situation where I’ve seen or known of others [using drugs].
"I have a family life, I have a work life and I have free time to spend with my friends. Pretty much the same as many people my age."
"I am going to be exactly the same person as I have been until now and I hope that it will be accepted.”
The prime minister has now answered calls for her to take a voluntary drug test, taking a test to “clear up suspicions”.
Ms Marin tested negative for drugs.