16-year-old Finnish girl steps into PM’s shoes for a day

A 16-year-old girl ceremoniously assumed the post of Finnish prime minister for one day for the "Girls Takeover" program - part of the UN International Day of the Girl to raise more awareness of gender equality.

Aava Murto from the small village of Vaaksy in southern Finland stepped into the shoes of Prime Minister Sanna Marin on Wednesday to highlight the impact of technology on gender equality, this year's theme for the annual event, the Finnish government said.

"Girls' access to technology is a significant, global equality issue that needs to be taken seriously," said Murto, who during her day met with Cabinet members and lawmakers, among others.

Murto and Marin, one of the world's youngest government leaders at 34 and the Nordic nation's second female prime minister, discussed what tech-savvy Finland with 5.5 million residents could do to improve girls' opportunities to use and develop technology on a global basis.

Harassment that girls face online remains a major issue worldwide, the stand-in prime minister and the real one stressed in a joint statement.

"Gender equality ambitions will fall short as long as girls are pushed aside from using and developing technology. Girls, too, have a digital future, and that is why girls should have a voice in technology," Murto said.

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