Finland: Reclaim The Cape action week

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Police attacks protesters in Pyhäjoki (FIN) on first day of action camp
Hanhikivi tourist signs like this have been removed since the NPP occupied the area (2013)
For protection against police attacks barricades were installed on the dirt road nearby the camp
This road connects highway E8 with Fennovoima's construction road
Access to Fennovoima's construction road
Street sign hinting to video surveillance in the area
Locals put up lots of anti-nuclear signs and placards in the region (2013)
Painted construction site sign

In the end of April 2016 it will be a year since Fennovoima started to prepare areas of Hanhikivi cape for the new nuclear power plant construction in Northern Finland. At the same time the protest camp against Fennovoima celebrates its first anniversary. The camp was able to stay inside the construction area over five months and was able to slow down the construction works. During the summer, dozens of blockades took place and newspapers wrote about various sabotages. In September, after the eviction that lasted eight days, the camp moved outside the construction site to continue its activities with help of local supporters. Blockades and other activity against nuclear power did not stop at any point.

In the end of April we are going to return to the construction site. The aim is to paralyze the whole construction site, for a long time. With a big enough group we can reoccupy the area and stay there. We don’t only want to occupy the area back but also fill the surrounding areas with activities against Fennovoima, nuclear power, destruction of nature and capitalism, and by respecting the plurality of tactics.

This on-going camp/action is a big deal in Finland where people taking part in civil disobedience (and grass root level political work in general) are not so many. Solidarity and participation is welcome from other parts of Europe and all around the world of course. This camp(aign) and the activities around it have been able stall the nuclear power plant, and they will continue to do so. You don´t wanna miss being a part of it! Keep this in mind when planning your spring and summer:

Come and join us to make this possible. Come to share your knowhow in a workshop or to learn from the more experienced, and start your summer with numerous comrades in the middle of nature just awaking for the spring.

The event starts on Friday 22 April with a party continuing over the weekend. The following week will be filled with action and workshops, sharing knowledge and knowhow, getting to know new comrades along with action. On Tuesday 26 April it will be thirty years from Chernobyl accident – symbolically perfect moment to stop a new nuclear project. On Chernobyl Day various organizations will carry out their protests and we will also do our part. The event will climax next weekend to the First of May when the aim is to organize an all-time riotous First of May party of Northern Finland. In the nearby cities marches for First of May are also organize and we can join them too.

You can read about our activities and follow the planning of the event at

If and when you decide to join us, send us an email. Please let us know if you are also interested in organizing a workshop or other activities.

Pyhäjoki: both camps evicted, several arrested, one hospitalised due to police brutality

This is our second communique and call-out on our hour of need: read the first one here

Repression against the opponents of Fennovoima-Rosatom nuclear power plant project continues: and it's getting worse and worse. On Friday 29.4. two protest camp sites got evicted at Pyhäjoki, Finland. Police operations were, on Finnish scale, massive. Not big. Massive. Present were roughly 20 police vans, officers in riot gear, border patrol's helicopter, sections from both national SWAT teams, dog units and specially equipped riot vans.

Police declared the eviction of both camp sites by presenting a legally vague, written police order without even specified locations of the camp sites or other information. Just an order to leave and a declaration that police will arrest everyone "under the police law" it considers to "be connected to locations" or "able to disrupt public order".

Majority of protest campers and Reclaim the Cape -action week participants grouped up and vanished into the forests without negotiating with the police.

As we speak, both sites are being emptied of infrastructure and belongings. Comrades are being searched and picked from the woods. Those been detained are being helped and awaited outside the cells. New camp site is under construction, but no public.

Thursday 28.4. several participants did a classical non-violent lock-on blockade against the Fennovoima-Rosatom construction. After several hours of blocking, police arrived but soon lost interest to the blockade, and instead advanced towards the action week camp. After police had forcefully taken over the camp site, 11 are still arrested after detention, eight of them international comrades. Some of them under a threat of imprisonment. So far charges are about "aggravated sabotage", "participating in violent riot" and "(violent) assaulting of a police officer".

One comrade is still hospitalised and in a severe condition, apparently due to been assaulted by police.

As usually, majority of mainstream media has not taken interest to be neutral or professional. Systematic defaming against the Fennovoima-Rosatom opponents is being carried out especially from YLE Oulu's (local department of national broadcast service) behalf.

As usually, we shall not bend our heads when confronted by state repression and physical violence. This police operation was a third large-scale operation against the Fennovoima-Rosatom opponents within four days. The sheer volume of police and state resources that have been put to work against us tell a simple story: we have been able to considerably harm Fennovoima-Rosatom and cross the line from inconvenient to possibly dangerous. Alongside, we have managed to spark up a culture of resistance not seen in Finland since the civil war on 1918: which undoubtedly has spooked those in power.

If there never was a time to invite every possible comrade to participate this struggle: this is the time to call out for practical solidarity. In our hour of need we call for support for the arrested and to builders and defenders of the new camp site here at Pyhäjoki - and to join the struggle by giving Fennovoima-Rosatom what its asking for. With deep respect to diversity of tactics, we encourage everyone to present this company and every firm connected to it with feedback: and to present Finnish embassies and local police representatives with their share.

Solidarity is a verb. Practice it. We call everyone everywhere to remember your captivated and wounded comrades here up north.

Police attacked 'Stop Fennovoima camp' at Pyhäjoki - We need help immediately!

28th of April about 3 PM riot cops and police patrol with dogs started to approach the camp. We communicated clearly to the police with a megaphone that they are not welcome, and we don't want to engage in conflict with them. The police didn't say anything or answer to any questions.

Police started to shoot people with a projectile / rubber bullet gun and the people at the camp defended themselves by throwing rocks. The police was clearly aiming for the activists heads, backheads and upper bodies with the gun. People got hit several times on the area of their upper bodies. As far as we know, not to the heads though... The police got hit several times with rocks, and there was one police car burning up in flames at the area.

After a long struggle with delay tactics, the police managed to move ahead to the camp when the people who were defending the camp disappeared to the forest. In the camp the police shot projectiles towards the kitchen-collective people. The police evacuated all the people from the camp, and took some people into custody.

Police has also threatened to evict another camp location which is still in our use.

We don't accept giving in to repression and police violence, and the struggle against Fennovoima will continue. Now we'll need everyone to help build up the camp again, and to continue the fight and actions against Fennovoima. We invite comrades to this fight where ever you are - let's aim our actions towards the companies which are working with/for Fennovoima, the embassies of Finland, or the local police.

"Somebody's mom got peppersprayed and detained" - 'Reclaim the Cape' action week starts with a piece of genuine police dialogue

All sorts of opponents of the Fennovoima-Rosatom nuke plant project have now gathered to the Hanhikivi peninsula at Pyhäjoki, Finland, nicely close to the Mordor itself. The action week (22.4.-1.5.) took an early start with participants starting to show up a good couple of weeks before the official starting day, causing the construction site and nearby region to get riddled with actions and occurrences of ELF-ish nature.


It’s not ethnic profiling, it’s just randomness

Naturally, all this has attracted the attention of the police. Local newspaper’s have been presenting nicely constructed propaganda pieces of police representatives going blah-blah-blah on how they wish to ”have a dialogue” with the action week folks.

Thus, well before the start of the action week, the police has done their best in attempting to stop bicyclists, pedestrians and drivers to have a dialogue of ID checks and blood tests in an attempt of trying to find someone who could be accused of drunk driving – or whatever their idea is, nobody really fully knows. (Maybe they just love to waste that tax payer’s money almost as efficiently as the nuke construction itself?)

All of this would be more hilarious than inconvenient – we mean, it’s not that difficult of not stopping with that bike or hopping into the woods when a shady van stops next to you – if they would not prioritize the ethnic profiling so high. Individuals with white Caucasian features have been successful in refusing to identify themselves, getting detained for 24 hours and still walking out without giving fingerprints or IDs. Logic is different with someone slightly less white. The one international person who refused to identify themselves and got locked up for three full days, threatened with detention centre trip and free flight back – well, whatever they would’ve decided as home – was of a little less white Caucasian sort.

This, of course, is not police carrying out ethnic profiling: it’s an entirely random coincidence. We’re positively sure.

How about pepper spraying that mother there?

On the morning of 22.4. a bunch of ten people had planned a bit of an opening ceremony for the action week. Chosen form was to have a go at the construction site with classical methods of non-violent civil disobedience. Whether this group were to use tripods, lock-ons or superglue to join hands in a sticky manner – that we do not know. But we do know, that the group sort of never got to start that ceremony.

One particularly vulnerable spot of the Fennovoima-Rosatom is its traffic. There’s only one road sturdy enough to take the heavy vehicles and landfill deliveries. Thus, this very bunch of people were also aiming to join hands in order to block this entry.

When closing in on the road, the bunch met with a police patrol who could not mentally handle a sight of classical non-violent demonstrators choreographing in. ”Two or three were emptying pepper spray cans in a speed of light, while one decided to just run in circles holding the handle of his gun. A complete case of lost marbles. If this is the way they react to a bunch of hippies, what do they do if meeting an actual heavy weight criminal?”, giggled one participant.

In the process of searching for their marbles the police managed to pepperspray and detain a mom participating the action with her daughter. (Citizens, remain calm: nation is being kept safe.)

Taser and a necklock - now, that’s an idea

Sadly, this is not the first case of lost marbles. On 14.4. three international comrades blocked two diggers from working by locking onto them. One of them used an u-lock, clicking themselves from their neck onto the hydraulic pipes of the machine’s arm. After the person refused to move their hands from the u-lock in an attempt to stop the police from cutting it, bluebells decided to taser them – three times. In a row.

Yes, dialogue is a fashionable word. While instructing the action week participants to protect themselves from cases of dialogue taking place by wearing appropriate eye protection and clothes that keep the dialogue from harming the skin, we’d like to make one thing clear.

If police wishes to perform a dialogue based on violence, they might need to reckon’ one simple rule of human interaction: ”monkey see, monkey do”. As protest campers it is not our position to put out anything that could be interpreted as a threat of any sort. But to some pacifism is a chosen tactic, not a heartfelt ideology.

Program, instructions, camp background and event info

(the following information was taken from the website

Check back the organizer's website regularly: as the action week draws closer, we will keep on updating and adding bits and pieces of information as we go. Schedules, presentations, actions, legalities, accommodations – all that stuff will get a more and more detailed form.

For the participants of the action week! Please, remember to inform us beforehand about your arrival – and especially so, if you’re not coming with your own tent but need an accommodation in the communal sleeping places. By doing this, you practice solidarity in action – and make arranging all this lovely camp madness a lot easier for the creatures of the woods responsible for it. Thanks in advance! Drop your messages to: stopfennovoima AT protonmail DOT com[1]

What’s this action week all about?

Reclaim the Cape is a charmingly crazy and madly brave try-out to introduce slightly different methods of civil disobedience, difference-making and expressing one’s opinion’s to Finnish mental landscape. The anti-nuclear protest camp at Pyhäjoki brings in a full-blown action week and a classical day of action, with a just as classical case of mass civil disobedience to go with it. We are aware of the ways mass civil disobedience have been used in other corners of the world before; and even if we do say so ourselves, we do think that if it’s possible to flood a Belgian GMO field, a German nuclear missile base or hop over the fences of Europe’s biggest military exercise area – it should not be exactly impossible to take over a planned nuclear power plant construction site behind a one simple fence.

With all its added extras, Fennovoima-Rosatom’s nuclear project has from its part succeeded in on thing: it has drawn clearly just how limited an individual’s possibilities in making a difference through traditional, parliamental or juridical channels, are. The rising current in political discussion’s in Finland have underlined this notion from one comment to another. When one is facing massive companies, state-run departments or both, the theatrical nature of many of traditional methods of political activity get revealed fast. Luckily, we do have a great selection of empowering examples of useless mega projects that have been either delayed heavily or cancelled totally largely because of persistent civil disobedience and resistance – despite the political support these projects have been enjoying.

We respect and practise the diversity of tactics. On that field, the combination of an action week and one set act of mass civil disobedience provides an – well, in-built diversity. Whether you’re interested about an easygoing low threshold action for a first-timer or something more colourful for a well-running smaller affinity group, this week will provide you with a terrain for everything.

To accompany that, we have a growing selection of presentation’s and workshops. Check back to get the latest news every once in a while.

Fennovoima-Rosatom nuke stuff: what’s that all about?

So. There’s an anti-nuclear protest site and an action week taking place. Why and against what, exactly? To put it all in a simple nutshell:

Fennovoima is a Finnish nuclear power company established in 2007 by a consortium of Finnish power and industrial companies thinking it’s a mighty good idea to put up a nuke plant at Pyhäjoki, a small municipality at the west coast of Finland. The project nearly faced its much wished-for doom when German energy giant E.ON, the main investor of the project at that time, decided nuclear power is bad business and withdrew its money in 2012.

Rosatom is Russian state corporation: it’s the only vendor in the global markets that offers the nuclear industry’s entire range of products, both civil and weapons. It’s led in an authoritarian manner by a nine-person strong supervisory board, elected single-handedly by President Putin – and naturally, famous for projects riddled with mafia connections, massive delays and accidents.

Fennovoima-Rosatom was born when Rosatom marched in to save Fennovoima: after E.ON left, it was the only investor willing to participate. Fennovoima needed a financial saviour – and Rosatom aimed to polish its reputation with a project in the west. It’s all about the geopolitics, you know: it doesn’t hurt Russia to place a geopolitical footprint to a region close to NATO favoured NEAT military test area in northern Sweden and of that much-talked about Arctic oil.

The Pyhäjoki protest camp saw daylight on April 2015, when first clear cuts started at Hanhikivi peninsula. While legally shady ”preparing works” advanced, the camp held its ground at the very construction site for five months, blocking the works, causing the local police complaining they haven’t got the resources anymore to deal with the protestors. At the same time newspapers were filled with news of sabotage and general mischief. In September 2015 the eviction of the camp took place, taking full eight days to get the last climber out. After the eviction the camp relocated to a site offered by a local land owner, roughly 4 km outside the construction site. Direct action and general mischief – still in program.

We know its a bit of a madhouse here, as you get to face with one go the whole current Russian administration, NATO-West, a nuclear energy giant, private security firms and the Ministry of Employment and the Economy of Finland. But hey, ho told not to aim high? On April 2016 the camp holds its first anniversary – and it’s time to pump up the gear. To be mad enough to bring the concept of mass civil disobedience to Finland in this scale. The goal is simple: to flood the construction site with people – and hold it as long as possible. May the nearby regions also be filled with all sorts of anti-nuclear, anti-capitalism, pro-all-things-good actions. We tip our hats to diversity of tactics – and summon all of you ecofreaks, antimilitarists and others to join us.

Schedules and infobits

22nd of April – 1sth of May: the action week itself.

Locations and routes: Pyhäjoki is accessible by public transportation, hitch-hiking and cars: check the directions] or contact us for details.

Food and accommodation: we cook vegan. Accommodation mainly in big heatable army tents – but if you have a tent on you, bring it in! Remember to dress warm. Likely there will be indoor accommodation arrangeable for some, but please – do contact us well beforehand to make that possible.

Practicalities: Solidarity is a verb: we encourage folks to drop in a voluntarily donation for food and such. Yes, you’ll be able to wash up: but it’ll be chilly. Before arriving we’d love you to drop us a message beforehand, stating roughly when and with or without your own tents etc. you’re coming.

Questions will be answered at: stopfennovoima AT protonmail DOT com[1]

22th-23th of April: Opening party! Music! People! Fun!

26th of April: Chernobyl memorial day – and the big action day. Along the week other activities possible.

1st of May: You get the drift. We bet you do.

For the whole week there will be workshops, presentations and skill sharing stuff to keep you busy. More details will be updated along the way: check back every once in a while! So far we will release the following presentations:

Lectures and discussions: additional workshops will be published on the camp's website

  • Russian nuclear engineer and environmental activist Andrei Ozharovski: The past and present of Rosatom
  • researcher Maarit Laihonen: The politics and backgrounds of Fennovoima's nuclear project
  • researcher and writer Olli Tammilehto: The history and timeline of failed nuclear projects
  • biochemist Jari Natunen: Fennovoima and nuclear waste

Also: please, let us know if you are interested in organizing a workshop or other activities.

Printable flyers can be found on the material-page.

Partners and co-organisators

More information about the camp

Background information

Scenario of possible radiation impact of a serious accident in the proposed Pyhäjoki NPP based on FlexRisk calculations

The nuclear company Fennovoima (formerly with the German nuclear company e.on as the biggest shareholder) wants to build a new nuclear power plant (NPP) in Finland. On October 5, 2011 Fennovoima announced their site selection for this location[2][3][4]. Fennovoima calls the proposed NPP "Hanhikivi 1 Nuclear Power Project".

Pyhäjoki has been founded a governing county in 1573 by Johan III, the king of Sweden. As a municipality, Pyhäjoki started its operations in 1865. The current borders were set in 1895 when Merijärvi congregation became independent from Pyhäjoki. These days about 3,400 residents are living in this area located in North Ostrobothnia. Active villages are Parhalahti, Yppäri, Pirttikoski, and Liminkakylä. Pyhäjoki is part of Raahe region with approximately 35,000 residents. The total area is 549 km² - including 542 km² land and 7 km² water. It holds 88 km of coastline on the Bothnian Bay and hosts around 150 companies and 130 farms.[5]

In July 2010 the Finnish parliament granted Fennovoima a decision-in-principle for its plans to build a new nuclear power plant, but the company has not been able to apply for a construction license from the Finnish government yet. An attempt to construct a new reactor in Pyhäjoki, on the Hanhikivi peninsula, a mainly untouched area with many endangered natural habitat types, is one of the most arrogant ones in the whole of Europe. Hanhikivi is an important nesting area for almost twenty endangered bird species, especially significant resting area for migrating arctic birds. If the nuclear power project is realized, the area will dramatically change to an industrial area.

The proposed plant site is located in Hanhikivenniemi (Hanhikivi Peninsula) about seven kilometers north from the center of Pyhäjoki. In Summer 2007 the nuclear power company Fennovoima had almost 40 alternative site options. In 2008 the Municipal Council of Pyhäjoki voted 15:6 for the EIA process. One year later, in December 2009, Fennovoima only considered two alternative sites for their NPP, Pyhäjoki and Simo, both with a strongly supporting local government. In 2010 the new regional land use plan for nuclear power was ratified by the Ministry of the Environment, and the municipal council of Pyhäjoki voted again 15:6 for the detailed and partial master land use plans. Also on the decision-in-principle of the Finnish government the municipal council of Pyhäjoki voted 16:5 for the project. Eventually, in October 2011 Fennovoima selected Pyhäjoki to be the NPP site. In June 2013 appeals against the new master and detailed land use plans in Pyhäjoki were rejected by the Supreme Administrative Court.[5]

Hanhikivi is a cape which is located in the municipality of Pyhäjoki, at North Ostrobothnia, on the coast of Bothnian Bay. Minor piece of the capes end belongs to the town of Raahe. The cape is about 5 kilometers long.[6] Hanhikivi means “Goose rock” in English. The name of the area comes from a relic: an erratic block which is located at the capes end.[7]

Hanhikivi area is a significant conservation entity of land uplift coasts. There are none exactly as large unitary forest areas of this kind of coast at North Ostrobothnia. Hanhikivi area includes coast biodiversity, quite representative herb-rich forests of land uplift area, small flood meadows and hardwood-spruce swamps. In addition, the area includes other statutory preserved objects such as sea-shore meadows and gloe lakes. The area of Hanhikivi has been noted in North Ostrobothnia county planning as a nature multipurpose area. There are, also, nationally significant relics and scenically valuable rocky area. Hanhikivi area is partially limited to Parhalahti-Syölätinlahti-Heinikarinlampi-Natura area.[8]

About 63 % of Hanhikivi area has been preserved. About 170 hectares were preserved in Merestä metsäksi project (forest programme) during 2005–2006 by natural values trading, subsidy for preserving ecological values and by buying land to state. There are, also, about 110 hectares preserved in other ways.[8]

Hanhikivi is a very valuable bird migration area. Hietakarinlahti-Takaranta area has been qualified as a nationally important bird area, FINIBA area (Finnish Important Bird Areas). FINIBA areas are remarkable areas for nature conservation. They are nesting and gathering places for threatened species and species for international special responsibility.[9]

Parhalahti-Syölätinlahti and Heinikarinlampi are Natura 2000 areas (code FI110420). It is defined as an nationally valuable bird water area. Also, the sea-shore meadows of Maunus are qualified as a regionally valuable traditional landscape and as the last clear-preserved sea-shore meadows. The surface area is about 275 hectares.[9]

Hanhikivi is also the name of a fixed relic, the delimeter from historical age. It has been qualified as a nationally valuable object and protected by the Antiquities Act (295/63). The Treaty of Nöteborg (Pähkinäsaaren rauha), also known as Treaty of Oreshek, is the peace treaty that set the first east border concerning Finland. The treaty was the first settlement between Sweden and Novgorod Republic regulating their border. The border began at Rajajoki, went to northwest across the Karelian Isthmus and ended to coast of Bothnian Bay. Hanhikivi is found as the delimiter of the Treaty of Nöteborg.[10]

Fennovoima still does not own all the land and water areas they would need for the construction, the land use plans for the nuclear power plant are not legally valid, and the company has not been able to show any solution for the disposal of its nuclear waste, which is prerequisite for granting the construction license. In autumn 2012 the master plan and the more detailed land use plan of the Hanhikivi area were in the Supreme Administrative Court of Finland, because of complaints made by the local NGO Pro Hanhikivi.

During the past years the company has faced a number of setbacks. Several of the Finnish shareholders have withdrawn from the project, the company has fired the chairman of the board as well as their CEO, and there is a lot of speculation in Finland about the possible collapse of the whole project. The latest turn at the end of October 2012 was, that the biggest shareholder in Fennovoima, the German energy giant e.on announced they will give up on the project and the interest in Fennovoima. As of February 15, 2013 e.on handed over their Fennovoima shares to Voimaosakeyhtiö, the consortium of Finnish companies now owning 100% of Fennovoima.[11][12]) Still, Fennovoima tries to move ahead with its plans at full speed. The company has started an official process through the Ministry of Employment and the Economy in order to expropriate the land areas they are still lacking. This means that the company is trying to take more than 100 hectares of land by force from private persons in Pyhäjoki. In the meantime the local government prepares the infrastructure for the huge construction site - forests have been clearcut, roads built and a big empty site is now waiting to host future construction work companies[13]. The art project CASE PYHÄJOKI in late summer 2013 criticized Fennovoima's image washing attempts in the region.

The Russian atomic power giant Rosatom expressed preliminary interest in supplying a AES-2006 (VVER-1200) reactor for Fennovoima[14] as well as buying a stake in the company in February 2013.[15] On July 3, 2013 Fennovoima announced their intention to join the deal with Rosatom[16]. Already in spring 2013, the boss of the Finnish nuclear safety authority, Jukka Laaksonen, had switched to Rosatom - a couple of months later it was announced that Rosatom would like to take over the Pyhäjoki NPP project[17].

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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 For protection against automatic email address robots searching for addresses to send spam to them this email address has been made unreadable for them. To get a correct mail address you have to displace "AT" by the @-symbol and "DOT" by the dot-character (".").
  2. as at October 5, 2011
  3. as at October 6, 2011
  4. as at October 7, 2011
  5. 5.0 5.1 as at August 7, 2013
  6. map link
  7. as at May 9, 2010
  8. 8.0 8.1 as at May 9, 2010
  9. 9.0 9.1 as at May 9, 2010
  10. as at May 9, 2010
  11. as at August 9, 2013
  12. as at August 9, 2013
  13. as at May 8, 2014
  14. source: Greenpeace briefing: "Rosatom nuclear new build plans outside Russia", 2013-07-22
  15. Reuters 23.2.2013: Russia's Rosatom says in talks with Finnish firm on nuclear reactor, in: Greenpeace briefing: "Rosatom nuclear new build plans outside Russia", 2013-07-22
  16. as at May 8, 2014
  17. as at July 30, 2013