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

TT/AFP/The Local
TT/AFP/The Local - [email protected]
Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Emergency services helped residents of an apartment building in Sundbyberg flee the fire via windows and balconies. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Eighteen injured in fire north of Stockholm, victims identified in fatal train crash, bankruptcies on the increase in Sweden, and Sweden cuts state funding for Russian Orthodox Church. Here's the latest news.


Eighteen injured in fire north of Stockholm

Eighteen people, including several children, were taken to hospital after a fire in an apartment building in Stockholm's north-western suburb Sundbyberg late on Thursday.

Police said initial reports did not suggest any deaths, but that several had suffered serious smoke inhalation.

Emergency services were called out to the scene shortly after 10pm after the fire broke out on the first floor. It is said to have started in an office and then spread to the communal stairwell and apartments, according to police.

Police are investigating arson, which is standard procedure when it is not immediately clear how a fire started.

The fire was put out around half an hour before midnight, reports the TT newswire.

Swedish vocabulary: an apartment – en lägenhet

Victims of fatal train accident in Örebro identified

The three people who died after being hit by a train in Örebro on Wednesday have been identified as a man in his mid-20s, a woman in her 20s and a young teenage boy, whose exact age has not been disclosed.

According to witness reports, they had just got off a passenger train at the station and were crossing the tracks without noticing the freight train that was travelling through the station at speed.

According to public broadcaster SVT Nyheter, more than 30 incidents were reported at the railway crossing in question last year, and several local residents told Swedish media that people often take a shortcut despite fences being set up to prevent accidents.

The Swedish Transport Administration said that the crossing has warning systems in place in the form of lights and audio alarms, with a gate that you have to open manually to cross the tracks. It said it would await the police investigation to see if the system had been faulty.

"It is terribly awful for everyone affected. We have to see what the police find and if there's anything we can do to improve safety we have to look into that," Bengt Olsson, head of press at the Transport Administration, told TT.

Swedish vocabulary: a railway crossing – en järnvägsövergång


Bankruptcies on the increase in Sweden

The number of bankruptcies in Sweden have increased 64 percent so far this year, according to credit information company UC.

The construction industry and hotel and restaurant business are among the worst affected by the financial downturn.

Bankruptcies in the construction industry increased 86 percent in February compared to the same month last year, and 62 percent in the hotel and restaurant industry.

UC predicts that the situation will continue to worsen and reach rock bottom this summer, then hopefully begin to improve.

Swedish vocabulary: a bankruptcy – en konkurs


Sweden cuts state funding for Russian Orthodox Church

A Swedish agency for grants for faith institutions said Thursday it was cutting support to the Russian Orthodox Church, after Sweden's intelligence service warned the church was used for intelligence activities.

The Swedish Agency for Support for Faith Communities said in a statement that it was also cutting financial support for the church, also known as the Moscow Patriarchate, for not living up to its "democracy criteria".

It said that Sweden's Security Service (Säpo) believed the church was used by the Russian state "as a platform for gathering intelligence and other security-threatening activities".

The agency also noted that the Russian church denied the allegations made against it.

The Moscow Patriarchate was already among the smaller recipients of grants for faith-based institutions, and in 2022 the church received just under 200,000 kronor ($19,300) from the Swedish state.

Swedish vocabulary: a grant – ett bidrag


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