Tuesday

18th Jan 2022

MEPs to grill Denmark for pushing Syrians to EU states

MEPs are taking the EU-lead to hold Denmark to account for stripping Syrians of residency rights. Although aware of the problem, the European Commission has other priorities while the issue has not been raised at the Council, representing member states.

News in Brief

  1. Maltese MEP Roberta Metsola elected EU Parliament president
  2. Swedish MEP wants fines for EU carbon villains
  3. One year on: EU urges Russia to free Navalny
  4. EU bids farewell to late parliament president Sassoli
  5. Sweden investigates drones over nuclear plants
  6. Argentina, Australia, and Canada face EU travel restrictions
  7. German minister takes EU message to Moscow
  8. Djokovic now also at risk of missing French Open

Column

Breastfeeding for democracy

Clubs, associations and social networks help to give meaning not just to life, but to the entire democratic system. Be they dinner groups, voluntary fire brigades, citizens' councils, environmental NGOs, neighbourhood committees coaching refugees, and yes, why not, breastfeeding-support groups.

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Podcasts: Nordic voices on the green transition

How close are we to battery-powered planes? What effect has Greta Thunberg had on the attitudes of her fellow Swedes? Is small-scale farming the future? These are some of the questions up for discussion in a new podcast series.

Opinion

EU's Arctic policy is not 'convenience' but necessity

Climate change, economic opportunities and geopolitics make European and German attention to the 'High North' a political necessity, writes the EU's special envoy for Arctic matters.

Feature

Nordic parliaments agree mutual defence on cyberattacks

A cyberattack against one of the Nordic parliaments will be seen as an attack on them all, MPs at the annual council of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland agreed this week.

Feature

Raped in front of husband - the story of one refugee

I dread evenings. This is when all bad things happen. When your house is raided by militants, when you are physically or sexually assaulted, when your daughter's very life is threatened.

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Denmark and Hungary oppose EU rules on minimum wages

Work ministers reached a common position over EU draft law on minimum wages in Europe, without the support of Denmark and Hungary. The agreement comes after months of negotiations - and strong opposition led by Scandinavian countries.

Stakeholder

Dialogue and action – Nordic cooperation and view on COP26

Nordic countries launched several initiatives at the COP26 climate conference which will have a real impact on the ground. Nordic and UK pension funds are to invest billions in clean energy and climate initiatives. Greenland has joined the Paris Agreement.

All-time high for Norway's oil and gas production

Norway currently has 90 oil and gas-producing fields, which could rise to more than 130. One way that harms the shift to a greener economy is because offshore wind and the burgeoning hydrogen industry are competing for the same workers.

Opinion

How ABBA distorted our perceptions of Sweden

The 'Waterloo'-era 1970s was indeed a positive and thriving time in Sweden, during which much progress was made in society. That progress, driven by the Social Democrats, with Olof Palme as prime minister, ensured a high-level welfare state.

Interview

Nato invite sees Nordic states stepping up security cooperation

Sweden and Finland are no longer embarrassed to cooperate with Nato countries, says the Nordic Council president. With Nato secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg addressing the November meeting, it has gone from being not discussed at all - to the main topic.

EU calls for ban on Arctic oil and gas drilling

Europe's new Arctic strategy called for increased "geopolitical" engagement and a ban on drilling, but without an army, the EU is relying on "sustainable diplomacy" to project influence.

Exclusive

Sweden leads opposition to EU forest regime

The EU's 2030 Forest Strategy is triggering diplomatic clashes over who should responsible for forest policy, as EU auditors voice concern on biodiversity loss.

Latest News

  1. 'Hundreds' of Russian mercenaries in Mali, EU confirms
  2. Euro countries start haggling on fiscal rules
  3. New doubts raised on tracking ads ahead of key vote
  4. Time to stop China's economic hostage-taking of Lithuania
  5. James Kanter, Shada Islam are new editors at EUobserver
  6. The loopholes and low bar in Macron's push for a global tax
  7. No love for Russia in latest EU strategy
  8. New EU Parliament chief elected This WEEK

Banks fuelling expansion of oil-and-gas Arctic extraction

A new report revealed that oil and gas firms are planning to ramp up their fossil fuel extraction in the Arctic by more than 20 per cent over the next five years, partly thanks to the financial support from banks.

Feature

The dilemma of Europe's returning female jihadis

This month, three Swedish women landed in Stockholm, expelled from Syria together with their children. Two of the women were arrested, one suspected of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. Their children were immediately taken into custody.

Interview

Will Erna Solberg be the Nordic Merkel – winning a third term?

The polls are not in Norwegian prime minister Erna Solberg's favour - but she thinks she has a 50-50 chance of winning a third term. Like Merkel, both are female leaders of conservative parties, and know how to win elections.

Feature

Denmark shattering lives of Syrian refugees

Denmark is throwing out Syrian refugees, who risk violence and who made Denmark their home for years, in a test of the EU country's respect for human rights.

Opinion

The Nordics unite to support the Council of Europe and ECHR

The foreign ministers of the five Nordic nations – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden – express deep concern that Europe's common core principles of human rights, democracy and the rule of law are increasingly contested.

EU commission takes stand against Danish asylum law

EU home affairs commissioner Ylva Johansson has taken a firm stand against outsourcing asylum to other parts of the world. Her comments follow a recent Danish law that aims to stop asylum seekers from filing claims in Denmark.

Denmark threatens Syria deportations amid EU concerns

Denmark is stripping Syrians of residency rights - the first country in the EU to do so - amid threats to deport them back home. The EU did not comment directly, but warned that Syria is not safe.

Opinion

Why Iceland isn't the gender paradise you think

Iceland's international reputation masks two blunt realities that face the country's women - the disproportionate levels of gender-based violence that they experience, and a justice system that is frequently suspicious and hostile towards victims of this violence.

Mayor breaks language divide in mixed Romanian city

The Romanian city of Sfântu Gheoghe plans to bridge the language gap between Hungarian and Romanian speakers by pioneering a programme to incentivise learning each other's languages.

Stakeholder

Podcast: 'Big Tech' and the threat to democracy

Do tech giants like Google, Apple or Facebook have too much power? Is their growing power a threat to democracy? These topics are highlighted in the latest Nordic Talks podcast, featuring three specialists - among them EU commissioner Margrethe Vestager.