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Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
An event at Liseberg earlier this summer. Photo: Tommy Holl/TT
Find out what's going on in Sweden today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Divers blow up sea mine in Stockholm’s archipelago

A German mine from the Second World War was destroyed by army scuba drivers off the coast of Stockholm this week.

It was first discovered by a freediver off the island of Öja, who contacted police and the coast guard when he spotted the mine — one of around 50,000 still located in the Baltic Sea and along Sweden’s west coast, which were planted to destroy ships that came into contact with them. This one was only five metres deep, and scuba divers from the Armed Forces were able to identify and destroy it.

Swedish vocabulary: mine – mina

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The changes to travel rules into Sweden you need to know about

We wrote yesterday that the government planned to announce changes to its entry ban to Sweden, and these were announced as expected on Thursday afternoon.

Six countries were on Thursday removed from the exempt list of “safe countries”: the United States, Israel, Kosovo, Lebanon, Montenegro and Northern Macedonia, based on a rise in Covid-19 infections in those countries. From September 6th, the entry ban will apply to these countries, too. Travellers may still enter Sweden from these places if they fall into another exempt category, such as having EU citizenship or a Swedish residence permit, but they will not be exempted solely on the basis of the country of departure.

Additionally, the government has said it may exempt vaccinated tourists from certain non-EU countries from its Covid entry restrictions, but there has not yet been confirmation of which countries this would apply to or from when.

Swedish vocabulary: safe – säker

Abba reveal new music

Fans of Swedish quartet Abba were in for a treat on Thursday evening as the group released two new songs, announcing a 10-song album (their first in four decades) and virtual concert. The two tracks premiered during a livestream were ballad I Still Have Faith In You and Don’t Shut Me Down.

Since parting ways in 1982 they have resisted all offers to work together as a foursome, but they announced they were returning to the studio in 2018, leaving fans to wait three years to hear the new music.

Swedish vocabulary: concert – konsert

Young, unvaccinated people drive rise in Covid infections

Covid cases are rising in Sweden, with more people requiring care in hospital due to the virus and many regions reporting that healthcare is strained, including care not related to Covid, authorities said in their joint press conference on Thursday.

Deputy state epidemiologist Karin Tegmark Wisell said that younger, unvaccinated people were over-represented in both cases and hospital admissions.

Currently, 82 percent of the adult population has received at least one dose of vaccine, while 71 percent are fully vaccinated. Unlike neighbours Denmark, Finland and Norway, Tegmark Wisell said the Public Health Agency did not currently plan to recommend vaccination to children aged 12-15.

Swedish vocabulary: dose – dos

Liseberg cuts entry numbers

Gothenburg theme park Liseberg has reduced the number of guests who may visit from around 7,000 to 6,000, following difficulties in getting visitors to keep a safe distance.

“We have seen a radically changed guest behaviour this year. The guest make-up is far more homogeneous than it normally is at Liseberg and there has been an unusually strong pressure on our attractions and queue areas,” CEO Andreas Andersen said in a statement.

The company is buying back around 14,000 tickets which were sold for the remaining 16 days of the summer season. These guests will be refunded and will get first priority for tickets over Halloween.

Swedish vocabulary: to reduce – sänka


Member comments

  1. I agree with Louis and am writing from the east coast of the US. I have a son who lives in Stockholm with his Swedish partner. We have not seen them in 2 years due to COVID. They just had a baby, my first grandchild. I am beyond frustrated that I may not be able to visit this little bundle of joy and his parents in the foreseeable future. My husband and I are fully vaccinated, happy to get tested before and/or after traveling to Sweden, and even ready to quarantine if need be. While I understand the reluctance of many countries to provide easy entry to all visitors from the US, we do not live in one of the states dominated by right wingers and anti-vaxxers who reject science and are the main reason we have seen such an explosion of hospitalizations in the country. It seems that EU nations ought to be able to use current data to develop policies that take account of the vastly different track records of the various US states. For example, we live in a state with one of the lowest rates of new COVID cases in the country and a region with rates that are less than half the national average. In other words, we live among responsible, vaccinated, mask-wearing people and government officials. It seems unwarranted and excessive for Sweden to deny entrance to residents of my state and region of the US. while at the same time allowing people in from EU countries with much higher rates of infection and vaccination.

    1. I agree with Louis and am writing from the east coast of the US. I have a son who lives in Stockholm with his Swedish partner. We have not seen them in 2 years due to COVID. They just had a baby, my first grandchild. I am beyond frustrated that I may not be able to visit this little bundle of joy and his parents in the foreseeable future. My husband and I are fully vaccinated, happy to get tested before and/or after traveling to Sweden, and even ready to quarantine if need be. While I understand the reluctance of many countries to provide easy entry to all visitors from the US, we do not live in one of the states dominated by right wingers and anti-vaxxers who reject science and are the main reason we have seen such an explosion of hospitalizations in the country. It seems that EU nations ought to be able to use current data to develop policies that take account of the vastly different track records of the various US states. For example, we live in a state with one of the lowest rates of new COVID cases in the country and a region with rates that are less than half the national average. In other words, we live among responsible, vaccinated, mask-wearing people and government officials. It seems unwarranted and excessive for Sweden to deny entrance to residents of my state and region of the US. while at the same time allowing people in from EU countries with much higher rates of infection and vaccination.

  2. As one of the over 70% of Americans that has had at least one does a an approved Covid vaccine ,and nearly 60% that are fully vaccinated, it is regretful that we are being “punished” by not allowing us access to Sweden, a country many have family and friends we would like to visit. I have a federal(national) CDC card with a QR code certifying I have been fully vaccinated. I believe politics, not science, is driving this decision. The US is still banning EU citizens from visiting he US per disgraced former president Trump. I believe president Biden needs to allow fully vaccinated EU citizens open access to tourist visas to the US. If either the US or EU allows citizens fully vaccinated to visit ,the other would quickly follow suit. It is a sad game of chicken to see who will go first. In the meantime, both US and EU citizens fully vaccinated wanting to travel across the Atlantic will suffer.

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