Helsinki, Oct 12: Finnish Minister for International Development Heidi Hautala announced her resignation Friday, after she was accused of demanding a state-owned company to withdraw a criminal complaint against Greenpeace activists, the government said.
The minister initially denied of meddling in the matter by putting the blame on her subordinate Pekka Timonen, who was in charge of the state ownership steering office. Later, she admitted of having been aware of the intention to block the complaints and nodded approval, said Finnish broadcasting company Yle.
The activists twice boarded ice-breakers in Helsinki last year, staging protests against their role in a joint operation with Shell to drill for oil in Alaska, Xinhua reported.
The vessels were owned by Arctia Shipping, the management of which had wanted to file the complaints but only had to drop it because of disapproval from the authority.