Erkki Tuomioja

Erkki Tuomioja
Minister for Foreign Affairs
In office
22 June 2011  28 May 2015
Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen
Alexander Stubb
Preceded by Alexander Stubb
Succeeded by Timo Soini
In office
25 February 2000  18 April 2007
Prime Minister Paavo Lipponen
Anneli Jäätteenmäki
Matti Vanhanen
Preceded by Tarja Halonen
Succeeded by Ilkka Kanerva
President of the Nordic Council
In office
Preceded by Dagfinn Høybråten
Succeeded by Sinikka Bohlin
Personal details
Born (1946-07-01) 1 July 1946
Helsinki, Finland
Political party Social Democratic Party
Spouse(s) Marja Helena Rajala (from 1978)
Alma mater University of Helsinki
Website Official website

Erkki Sakari Tuomioja (born 1 July 1946) is a Finnish politician and a member of the Finnish Parliament. From 2000 to 2007 and 2011 to 2015, he served as the Minister for Foreign Affairs. He was President of the Nordic Council in 2008.[1]

Tuomioja is a member of the Social Democratic Party of Finland, although his political views are thought to be more to the left than the party line. He is also a member of ATTAC. In the past, Tuomioja has dated the former Finnish president Tarja Halonen.

Tuomioja comes from a family of politicians. His father Sakari Tuomioja was a prominent liberal Finnish politician and diplomat, and the challenger of Urho Kekkonen for the conservatives and liberals in the 1956 presidential elections. His maternal grandmother was Hella Wuolijoki, the Estonian born writer and socialist activist.[2]

Tuomioja holds the degrees of Master of Social Sciences (1971) and Master of Science in Economics and Business Administration (1974) from the Helsinki School of Economics, as well as Licentiate in Social Sciences (1980) and Doctor in Social Sciences (1996) from the University of Helsinki. In addition to Finnish, Tuomioja speaks Swedish, English, French, German and Estonian.[3]

Tuomioja has been a member of the Finnish Parliament 1970–1979 and 1991–present. He held the position of Minister of Trade and Industry in Lipponen's 2nd government, and became the Minister for Foreign Affairs after Tarja Halonen was elected the President of Finland.[4]

Tuomioja, like several other Finnish socialist politicians of today, took part in the illegal occupation of the Old Student House (Vanha ylioppilastalo) in Helsinki on 25 November 1968. He was member of the anti-war group Committee of 100 of Finland and took part in the so-called Erik Schüller case, in which a group of students made public incitement against obligatory conscription. Despite his anti-war stance, Tuomioja did carry out his own mandatory military service and is a reservist staff sergeant.[3]

Tuomioja is the author of several books. His A Delicate Shade of Pink about his grandmother Hella Wuolijoki and her sister Salme Murrik won the Non-Fiction Finlandia Prize in 2006. The book was originally written in English and translated to Finnish as Häivähdys punaista.[2]

Tuomioja is a declared atheist.[5]

EU Presidency

When Finland held the rotating EU Presidency in the second half of 2006, Tuomioja had a prominent role as the spokesman of European Union foreign policy. He was among the first to demand an immediate cessation of hostilities in the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict. He was one of Finland's most dominant politicians in the 1990s.

See also


  1. "Nordisk Råds tidligere præsidenter — Nordisk samarbeid" (in Norwegian). Norden. Retrieved 2012-09-12.
  2. 1 2 Tuomioja, Erkki: Häivähdys punaista, s. 374. Kustannusosakeyhtiö Tammi, 2006. ISBN 951-31-3693-0 ISBN 978-951-31-3693-2.
  3. 1 2 ", henkilötiedot". Erkki Tuomioja. Retrieved 2015-02-07.
  4. "Eduskunta - kansanedustajat". Eduskunta. Retrieved 2012-09-12.
  5. Tuomas Manninen (2008-01-04). "Ateisti Erkki Tuomioja: Teologit ulos yliopistosta! - Ilta-Sanomat". Iltasanomat. Retrieved 2012-09-12.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Erkki Tuomioja.
Political offices
Preceded by
Tarja Halonen
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Ilkka Kanerva
Preceded by
Alexander Stubb
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Timo Soini
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