Speaking to a number of foreign dignitaries in Stockholm yesterday, Minister for Foreign Affairs Margot Wallström expressed her gratitude for electing Sweden to take a non-permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council.

After decades of civil war, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) was established in 2013. Among its mandated functions is to support the Federal Government of Somalia in the areas of peace- and state-building.

More women – more peace. Studies show that the full and equal participation of women in peacebuilding processes contributes to better and more sustainable peace and security in society. On 12-14 December, Sweden invited women activists from all provinces in Afghanistan to participate in a training on dialogue and mediation skills in peace processes.

The EU enlargement package was adopted by the EU Commission on 9 November. This week, the conclusions will be discussed and adopted at the General Affairs Council (GAC).

Not a day goes by without us seeing and hearing about the hardships endured by people all over the world in their search for protection from conflicts and natural disasters. The number of forcibly displaced people now exceeds 65 million, of whom 21 million are legally regarded as refugees under the UNHCR’s mandate.

It’s time to celebrate the great minds of science in the spirit of Alfred Nobel. Saturday 10 December is the day of the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony at the Stockholm Concert Hall and the dazzling Nobel Banquet at the Stockholm City Hall.

For Sweden, the fight for human rights – both at home and internationally – is a key issue that must permeate all policy areas.
Human Rights Day is celebrated around the world on 10 December every year.
Rarely has the day been as important to celebrate as now.

It’s 250 years since Sweden established the world’s strongest freedom of the press through a ground-breaking new fundamental law, the Freedom of the Press Act. It was the first legislation of its kind anywhere in the world.
Freedom of the press, freedom of expression and opposition to censorship are of course well worth celebrating – and are still worth fighting for today!

The ambition was to conclude the EGA this weekend. We failed. A lot of finger pointing is taking place right now, as usual after negotiations stall, but trying to assign blame is not really meaningful. In trade negotiations defensive interests are usually the most difficult obstacles to get past. Even in an agreement like the EGA where the gains for all are so obvious, we could not avoid getting stuck on a few defensive positions.