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

Find out what's going on in Sweden today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
A man holds a phone with Sweden's BankID app on the screen. Photo: TT

Government delays ID controls after criticism

Sweden’s government is to delay planned ID controls on trains and buses into Sweden, following heavy criticism from politicians and business groups, particularly in southern Sweden. 

“The ID controls will have to wait,” Sweden’s infrastructure minister, Tomas Eneroth, told the TT newswire. “There are a lot of concerns and opinions on how it will affect commuter traffic over the Öresund [Bridge],” 

He gave no indication of how long the wait would be. The government this week brought in a new proposal which will bring in obligatory ID controls on boats travelling to Sweden from March 28th. This will anyway cover the main route Ukrainians are using to enter Sweden.  

Swedish vocab: att införa – to bring in, enact

Sweden’s BankID digital ID down for 2.5 hours 

Sweden’s digital ID service, BankID, stopped working for most users between 4.10pm and 6.50pm on Thursday because of a technical problem. 

“It was caused by a technical problem, but we cannot say exactly what caused the malfunction right now,” Charlotte Pataky, BankID’s press spokesperson, said. “User data has been protected and continued to be protected.” 

The Swish payment service, which uses BankID, was also affected. 

Swedish vocab: driftstörning – malfunction 

Sweden’s parliament votes to send more anti-tank weapons to Ukraine

Sweden’s parliament decided unanimously on Thursday to send a further 5,000 anti-tank weapons and mine-clearing equipment to Ukraine. The new package is worth 205 million kronor. 

The decision was taken only hours after Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke over a video link to the Swedish parliament. 

Swedish vocab: ytterligare – additional

Drunken Lund policeman charged for trying to run over colleague

A 50-year-old policeman in Lund has been charged for a long list of crimes, including drunkenly trying to drive over a colleague who tried to stop him driving.

The man has been charged, first, for beating his partner at their house, then for driving away in a state of severe intoxication.

When officers were called to the house by a young family member, one left his car and went into the road to stop the drunken man. But he drove on, forcing the officer to leap out of the way to avoid being injured. Finally, a second police car blocked the road, and the man was forced to return to his house. 

When police searched the car, they found that the officer had been carrying his police gun, ammunition, his baton, a large knife, and several bottles of spirits. He had a blood-alcohol level of 1.71 percent. 

Swedish vocab: rattfull — driving under the influence (“wheel-drunk”)

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

Magdalena Andersson in the US, property prices drop and Turkey's Nato objections. Here's Sweden's news on Thursday.

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

Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson to visit US President Biden

Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson is in Washington today alongside Finland’s president Sauli Niinistö. The two will visit US President Joe Biden to discuss the war in Ukraine and Turkey’s opposition to their Nato applications, which were handed in yesterday.

“The meeting is an important security policy signal,” Andersson wrote on her Instagram account from Washington DC.

The two Nordic leaders boarded the flight to Washington DC shortly after their Nato ambassadors applied to join the alliance.

At the meeting in the White House today, the delicate security situation in both Finland and Sweden will be discussed. A number of countries, including the USA, have stated that they will support Sweden and Finland in the period before their Nato applications are approved by all member states in the alliance.

A final approval could take up to a year, and Russia is expected to react to the two countries joining Nato in some way.

Sweden and Finland’s decision to join the Nato alliance was applauded by Ukrainians taking part in a demonstration outside the White House.

Swedish vocabulary: stöd – support

Property prices plummet after central bank increases inflation rate

Property prices have dropped after the Swedish central bank increased inflation rates.

At the same time, the amount of apartments on property website Hemnet has increased to a record level, as sellers seek to get their property on the market quickly.

Valueguard’s price index, which measures changes in prices, sank by 1.7 percent in the two first weeks of May in the Stockholm region. In Gothenburg, prices decreased by 1.3 when compared with April.

This is the first property price measurement in May since the central bank decided to increase key index rates by 0.25 percent while also sharply raising their interest rate forecast.

Having said that, there was also a decrease in property prices in April – 0.3 percent for apartments and 0.5 percent for houses.

Swedish vocabulary: en nedgång – a decrease

Turkish president Erdogan urges Nato to ‘respect’ concerns over Sweden joining

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has threatened to block Finland and Sweden from joining Nato, urged the alliance’s members on Wednesday to “respect” Ankara’s concerns about the two countries, which Turkey accuses of harbouring terrorists.

“Our only expectation from Nato allies is… to first understand our sensitivity, respect and finally support it,” Erdogan told his party’s legislators in parliament.

Finland and Sweden submitted a joint application to join Nato on Wednesday May 18th as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine forces a dramatic reappraisal of security in Europe.

Erdogan accused Stockholm of providing safe haven to members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) designated as a terror group by Ankara and its Western allies.

“We asked them to extradite 30 terrorists but they refused to do so,” he said.

“You will not send back the terrorists to us and then ask our support for your Nato membership … We cannot say ‘yes’ to make this security organisation being lacking in security,” he added.

Swedish vocab: terrorister – terrorists