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TODAY IN SWEDEN

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

Falling house prices, parliament and Nato, and who needs Twitter? Find out what's going on in Sweden with The Local's roundup.

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Tuesday
An estate agent puts out a sign ahead of a viewing of an apartment. Photo: TT

Sweden’s Social Democrats shut down Twitter account

Sweden’s ruling Social Democrat party is to shut down its Twitter account, saying it aimed “to focus on being out on the streets and in public squares to meet people”. 

“We will instead be on the streets and in squares, talking in workplaces and in stairwells and knocking on doors. You will even find us on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube,” the party wrote on Twitter. 

Johannes Svensson, a press spokesperson said that the party no longer felt that the “debate climate” on Twitter was “productive”. 

The party set up its account on the microblogging site in 2007. 

Swedish vocab: ett samtalsklimat – a debate climate 

Swedish opposition wants parliament to have role in Nato decision

Opposition parties are calling on Sweden’s government to today spell out the parliament’s role in handling a decision on whether or not to join the Nato security alliance.

Hans Wallmark, foreign policy spokesperson for the opposition Moderate Party, told the TT newswire that he expected an announcement to be made after the fifth meeting of the cross-party security policy analysis group, which is helping draw up the government’s new analysis of the changed security situation.

However, no announcement was made, and a press conference foreign minister Ann Linde had called for at 5pm was cancelled at short notice.

Swedish vocab: ett krav – a demand 

Swedish game publisher Embracer buys rights to ‘Tomb Raider’ and ‘Deux Ex’

Swedish video game publisher Embracer said on Monday that it had acquired three development studios responsible for hit games such as “Tomb Raider” and “Deus Ex” from Japanese publisher Square Enix.

The acquisition of the three North American studios Crystal Dynamics, Eidos-Montreal and Square Enix Montreal, totalled $300 million (285 million euros) and affects around 1,100 employees, Embracer said in a statement.

It also included the intellectual properties (IPs) for several best-selling franchises, such as “Tomb Raider,” starring British adventuring archeologist Lara Croft, who has been a video game character icon since her debut in 1996.

“We are thrilled to welcome these studios into the Embracer Group. We recognise the fantastic IP, world class creative talent, and track record of excellence that have been demonstrated time and again over the past decades,” Lars Wingefors, co-founder and CEO of Embracer, said in a statement.

Swedish vocab: att förvärva – to purchase 

Price of detached houses in Malmö and Stockholm falls three percent 

The price of detached houses in greater Malmö and greater Stockholm fell by three percent in April, showing signs that the property market in Sweden may be entering a downturn. 

“That it swings a bit up and down in some months isn’t so strange, but we are up at three percent, so that’s a pretty big change,” said Robert Boije, an economist at the state-owned mortgage lender SBAB. “The interesting thing now will be how durable it is.”  

The price of houses and apartments across the whole of Sweden fell just 0.8 percent. 

Swedish vocab: varaktig – durable 

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TODAY IN SWEDEN

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

Nato, Nato, and more Nato: Find out what's going on in Sweden with The Local's roundup.

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

Sweden’s defence minister: Nato decision to be taken today

Sweden’s government will meet later on Monday to take the historical decision to join Nato, the country’s defence minister Peter Hultqvist, has told state broadcaster SVT. 

“I can’t say exactly when the application will be sent in, but the decision is going to be taken today,” he said. 

Turkey have voiced their opposition to Sweden and Finland joining the alliance.

Hultqvist said that Sweden was sending a group of civil servants to discuss Turkey’s objections to Swedish Nato membership — something Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Sunday would not prevent Sweden joining the alliance. 

“We are going to a send a group of civil servants who are going to carry out a discussion and have a dialogue with Turkey, so then we’ll see how the issue can be solved and what the discussion is actually about. But the signals we’ve had from Nato are that there’s unanimity that both Sweden and Finland should join.” 

Swedish Vocab: avgör – to decide 

Sweden’s ruling Social Democratic Party backs Nato bid

Sweden’s ruling Social Democratic Party on Sunday said it was in favour of joining Nato, reversing its decades-long opposition and paving the way for the country to submit a membership application.

The turnaround comes amid soaring political and public support in Sweden for joining the Western military alliance after Russia’s February 24th invasion of Ukraine.

The issue has divided Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson’s Social Democrats, with some party members expressing concern that the decision was being rushed through.

The party said on Sunday that if Sweden’s application were approved, it would work to express “unilateral reservations against the deployment of nuclear weapons and permanent bases on Swedish territory.”

Swedish vocab: att vara orolig – to be worried/concerned

Finland confirms it will apply to join Nato as Sweden set to follow

Finland’s President Sauli Niinistö confirmed on Sunday that his country would apply for Nato membership as Sweden’s ruling party was to hold a decisive meeting that could pave the way for a joint application.

The announcement came after Niinistö and Prime Minister Sanna Marin said on Thursday they both favoured Nato membership, in a major policy shift prompted by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Today, we, the president and the government’s foreign policy committee, have together decided that Finland … will apply for Nato membership,” Finnish President Sauli Niinistö said at a joint press conference with Prime Minister Sanna Marin in Helsinki on Sunday.

“I have great feelings, of course, this is an historic day. It started in the morning when I visited the memorial service to honour Finland’s fallen heroes”, Niinistö told reporters.

Niinistö said that the decision will secure Finland’s security policy and that it “does not disadvantage anyone”.

Sweden’s foreign minister Ann Linde said the decision would have “great significance” for Sweden.

Swedish vocab: betydelse – significance 

US in support of Sweden and Finland joining Nato

The State Department’s top diplomat for Europe, Karen Donfried, and President Joe Biden have reiterated US support for Sweden and Finland joining Nato, ahead of a meeting between Alliance foreign ministers in Berlin on Saturday.

In a phone call on Friday morning with Sweden’s Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson and Finnish President Sauli Niinistö, US President Joe Biden reiterated support for Nato’s open-door policy, the White House said. He had also stressed that Sweden and Finland had the right to decide their own future.

Donfried said on Friday: “The United States would support Finland or Sweden joining Nato should they choose to do so.” A formal membership application by the two countries would be “further evidence of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s strategic miscalculation,” she said.

Finland and Sweden are “valued Nato partners” and “thriving democracies,” Donfried said. Referring to remarks by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the top diplomat said Turkey’s position must now be clarified. 

Swedish vocab: att stödja – to support 

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