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Sweden has ratified the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM)

"The Convention is an important element in efforts to bring about a broad-based ban on cluster munitions and reduce the unacceptable human suffering they cause," says Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt.

The UN has now received the Swedish instrument of ratification and announced that the Convention will enter into force in Sweden on 1 October 2012.

First Swedish Advocate-General to EU Court of Justice

Nils Wahl was yesterday appointed as Advocate-General to the Court of Justice of the European Union. This is the first time a Swede will take this office within the European judicial system.
The European Court of Justice interprets EU law to make sure it is applied in the same way in all EU countries. The task of the Advocate-General is to present opinions on the cases brought before the Court.
"It is gratifying that Sweden now has the opportunity to have a Swede as one of the eight advocates-general in the Court of Justice of the European Union. Nils Wahl is an excellent person for this appointment," says Anders Rönquist, Director-General for Legal Affairs at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

China's Minister of Commerce Chen Deming at today's meeting at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Photo: Linn Duvhammar

Ewa Björling meets China's Minister of Commerce

On 24 April, in conjunction with the Chinese Premier's visit to Sweden, Minister for Trade Ewa Björling meets her Chinese counterpart Chen Deming.
The talks will focus on creating conditions to further strengthen bilateral relations in the area of trade and investments.

Photo: Linn Duvhammar/MFA

Kofi Annan met Minister for International Development Cooperation

Minister for International Development Cooperation Gunilla Carlsson yesterday met Kofi Annan during his visit to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. They spoke generally about developments in Africa and about the situation in the Horn of Africa and in Kenya. Mr Annan's mission as the Joint Special Envoy of the United Nations and the League of Arab States to Syria was also discussed.

Carl Bildt to Thailand and Brunei

Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt will be in Bangkok on Tuesday and Wednesday, 24-25 April, for meetings with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul, leader of the opposition Abhisit Vejjajiva and civil society representatives. The focus of the visit is deeper relations between Sweden and Thailand.

Over the past decade, Swedish exports to Sub-Saharan Africa have increased by 75 per cent. In the picture, Cape Town in South Africa. The country serves as a business hub for all of Africa. Photo: Flickr/InsideSouthAfrica (cc)

"Africa is a large continent with huge potential"

Africa has gone from being 'the hopeless continent' to the hopeful continent, a continent in transformation where there are opportunities for Swedish companies. That is the message conveyed by Minister for Trade Ewa Björling in her speech at the Swedish Trade Council's Africa Day - 'Business opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa' on 23 April. Dr Björling answers a few questions about Swedish exports to Africa.

Panelists: Joakim Jardenborg, Johan Hallenborg (MFA), Danny Aerts (.SE), Pernilla Näsfors (Sida), Chiranuch Preimchaiporn and moderator Per Sjögren (MFA). Photo: Hanna Björnfors/MFA

SIF12 conference concluded at the MFA

A summarising seminar on the SIF12 conference was held today at the International Press Centre. The seminar was in the form of a panel discussion, which was open to anyone who wanted to take part. Among the participants was Joakim Jardenberg, who acted as a digital curator during the conference, and Chiranuch Premchaiporn from the Thai web newspaper Prachatai. The panel also included representatives of the three organisers: Sida, the .SE foundation and the MFA.

Information about what occurred during the conference is available on the SIF12 website. This includes video recordings from all sessions, photos, interviews, tweets and summarised reports.

Bonus material from SIF12


Here you can view behind-the-scenes films from SIF12.

See interviews with SIF12 participants


Here you can view filmed interviews with participants made during the conference.
US Ambassador Mark Brzezinski surprised audience at Kulturhuset with video greeting from President Barack Obama. Photo: MFA/Charlotte Svalberg Lindquist (cc)

President Obama honours Raoul Wallenberg

'Days of Remembrance' is an annual event at the US Congress in connection with Holocaust Remembrance Day in the US. The theme this year was to call special attention to those who risked their lives during the Second World War to save people from the Holocaust. Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg was one of those honoured.

The event, which was broadcast live at Kulturhuset in Stockholm, was opened by Minister for EU Affairs Birgitta Ohlsson, followed by author Ingrid Carlberg. Before the live broadcast began, the US Ambassador in Sweden, Mark Brzezinski, spoke about 'the rescuers'. Everyone was surprised when the Ambassador concluded by presenting a unique video greeting from President Barack Obama who honoured Raoul Wallenberg's actions.

Responsible business practices, Internet freedom and human rights

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs has launched a new paper about enhancing Internet freedom and human rights through responsible business practices. The paper aims to stimulate collective action in relation to protecting and enhancing human rights, focusing on the freedom of expression on the Internet through responsible business practices. It lays out the challenges and opportunities involved in paving the way ahead. It draws on existing work, looks at some dilemmas the ICT sector faces and the guidance already available to businesses.

Sweden, a Nation of the Internet and a Nation of Freedom

18-19 April the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Internet Infrastructure Foundation (.SE) and Sida are organising the first ever Stockholm Internet Forum on Internet Freedom for Global Development - SIF12 - an international conference on the role of internet freedom in global development. Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt is hosting the conference.