Alexander Stubb, a former Prime Minister of Finland, has won that country’s presidential election.
He won 51.6% of the vote against the 48.4% won by Pekka Haavisto.
The pair had been the top candidates in the first round of the election, held last month, with Stubb securing 27.2% and Haavisto 25.8%.
A hardline anti-immigration candidate, Jussi Halla-aho, had been third with just below 20% of the vote.
Stubb, a member of the centre-right National Coalition Party, said that the win was the ‘greatest honour’ of his life.
At a press conference after the results were announced Stubb said that it was ‘rather self-evident that it’s difficult to have any kind of political dialogue with Putin as long as Russia is waging an aggressive war against Ukraine. So, I don’t see any kind of communication with Putin or with the Russian political leadership in the near future. We all want to find a pathway towards peace, but it seems to me that that pathway happens only through the battlefield at the moment.’
Finland and Russia share a long land border and have clashed militarily in the past.
Stubb will officially become president on 1 March.