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Carl Bildt to meet Turkish and Brazilian foreign ministers

Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt today begins a visit to Izmir, Turkey, at the invitation of Turkey's Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoglu. Alongside his Brazilian counterpart Antonio de Aguiar Patriota, Mr Bildt will speak at the annual Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ambassadors Conference, which is taking place in the city.

"The visit offers an opportunity for both formal and informal meetings with ministers and diplomats from two countries that are increasingly important in both their regional contexts and on the global stage. Ministers Davutoglu and Patriota are also colleagues with whom I have regular contacts," says Mr Bildt.

State Secretary Sofia Strand speaking about the decision to provide an extra contribution of SEK 10 million to the university. Photo: Josefin Ekström/MFA

Additional support to university in exile

A delegation from the expelled Belarusian university, European Humanities University (EHU), was welcomed at a reception at Rosenbad this week. Students, management and members of the university board are in Stockholm for a week to celebrate the university's 20th anniversary. Sweden have supported the university since 2005. This year the Government will offer an extra contribution of SEK 10 million, funds that will be very useful and can be used to further develop the EHU.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt at the conference. Photo: Linn Duvhammar/MFA

A final tribute to Wallenberg

A conference held today marks the end of Raoul Wallenberg Year 2012. During the year, innumerable exhibitions, seminars and a variety of events have been held in some 50 countries in memory of the brave Swede who saved so many lives.
"All that has been done, said, written and thought during this year actually makes this more of a starting point for what lies ahead of us," said Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt, one of the conference speakers.

Leona Aglukkaq and Carl Bildt at the press conference held after their meeting. Photo: Catarina Axelsson/MFA

Bildt meets Canadian Minister of Health for discussions on the Arctic

Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt met Canadian Minister of Health Leona Aglukkaq on Tuesday. In May 2013, Sweden will hand over the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council to Canada, under Ms Aglukkaq's leadership, for the period 2013-2015. The work of the Arctic Council to protect the environment from oil spills, and Canada's plans for its upcoming Chairmanship, were discussed at today's meeting.

Carl Bildt travels to Beijing

Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt is to visit Beijing on 6-8 December. During his visit, Mr Bildt will hold political talks, meet representatives of the Swedish business community and take part in Stockholm China Forum.

Mr Bildt will also be the first foreign minister to answer questions on Chinese microblog Sina Weibo. He will also be available to answer questions on Twitter.

Carl Bildt on Palestine's status in the UN

During today's vote at the UN General Assembly in New York, Sweden will vote in favour of the draft resolution that clearly supports a two-state solution and gives Palestine non-member observer state status. Intensive diplomatic efforts have led up to today's vote. Sweden's approach throughout has been to strive for unity within the EU, but to vote in favour of the resolution if such a consensus was not possible to achieve.

Foto: UN Photo/Martine Perret

A day to raise awareness of violence against women and girls

A study conducted by the World Bank showed that for women and girls aged 16-44, gender-based violence causes more harm than cancer, traffic accidents, war and malaria. The problem is particularly serious in countries that are, or have been, in conflict, and constitutes one of the main obstacles to development and peace.
In December 1999, the UN decided to designate 25 November as the annual International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

An entire day about Swedish literature

On 22 November the Ministry for Foreign Affairs will host a worldwide book club - Storytellers of Sweden. During the course of an entire day various literary activities will be arranged, such as panel debates and readings by more than 20 Swedish authors, including PO Enqvist, Majgull Axelsson and Camilla Läckberg. The event will be conducted in English and webcast on www.government.se/storytellers making it an opportunity for the attending authors and readers in nations around the globe to discuss Swedish literature. Readers are invited to take part by submitting questions on Twitter or via text message.

Joint discussions for EU defence and foreign ministers

Both foreign ministers and defence ministers will meet in the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels on 19 November. The foreign ministers intend to focus on developments in the Southern Neighbourhood and the situation in Ukraine. The joint discussion with defence ministers is expected to centre on the crisis in Mali and preparations ahead of the meeting of the European Council in December 2013.

Egypt's Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohamed Kamel Amr, Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt and Sweden's Ambassador in Cairo Malin Kärre. Photo: Charlotta Ozaki Macias/MFA

Carl Bildt in Egypt for EU-Arab League meeting

Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt is visiting Egypt from 13 to 15 November to take part in an EU-Arab League foreign ministers meeting and a meeting of the EU-Egypt Task Force. During his visit to Egypt, Mr Bildt will raise issues such as economic development and internet freedom, major enabling factors in the country's democratic development. The situation in Syria will also be discussed.

Mr Bildt will answer questions via Twitter on Thursday 15 November, 13.45-14.00.