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The Finnish prime minister, Juha Sipila, has apologised after a photograph surfaced of him posing with two women at a Helsinki nightclub in 2007.
Trouble has been brewing for some time in Finland after a song included a reference to the “Sipila girls” and Sipila, 50, was dropped as a solo promoter for a pop concert because the singer would not work with Sipila after the rapper R. Kelly.
Juha Sipila (@Juni_Sipila) I am sorry the photos of me and my friends has caused discomfort and I hereby apologize
When the prime minister was presented with the photographer’s pictures, he said: “These are the photos I took with some girls at the Studio Dailly.
“For me this shouldn’t have happened.”
The news website Helsingin Sanomat said Sipila was not chosen as a music promoter for a Reykjavik concert after it was suggested he had taken photographs with the women.
“I was told that Sipila had attracted the publicity and controversy by visiting the nightclub. Apparently this is how it was pictured and presented.”
Last month, the broadcaster YLE revealed Sipila had a “trivial” one-night-stand when he was 18, but insisted the affair was consensual.
Sipila, who was born in 1966, has made headlines for his vocal support of the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, and a refusal to relinquish his seat on a European commission committee.