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  #181  
Old 02-10-2004, 05:50 PM
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Here's an article about the business aspect of the contacts between Sweden and Brunei from Brudirect.com:

Sweden yesterday offered Brunei the cutting edge technology in the development of ICT after the two countries concluded a Bilateral Discussion on ICT at the Empire Hotel and Country Club.

Sweden, which is a frontline nation in the field of Information Communication Technology (ICT), offered cooperation as the Sultanate seeks 3G status in telecommunications.

The Co-Chair of the session, Ms Anita Jonsson, Director of IT & Telecom, Swedish Business Council, said Sweden was ready to offer expert training in collaboration with Swedish companies like Ericsson and Possio, among others, and also to set-up centres of excellence for training and ICT talent development.

Sweden also showed interest in enhancing cooperation in telecommunications equipment manufacturing in Brunei.

Data Paduka Buntar Osman, CEO of Brunei's Authority for Info-Communications Technology Industry of Brunei (AiTi), said Brunei is on the doorstep of launching a 3G system, one of the first countries in Asia in this aspect.

Dato Buntar revealed this in his report to His Majesty Carl XVI Gustaf, the King of Sweden on the two countries' ICT session after the roundtable discussion yesterday.

3G is also the next phase of development for Sweden which is transforming the telecom system from a monopoly to a thriving market. It was the first event when ICT experts from Brunei and Sweden, well known for its leading companies in the field of telecom such as Ericsson, met.

Dato Buntar also said that during the roundtable discussion, Brunei was impressed by the high PC and Internet penetration in Sweden, not least in view of Sweden's large territory and investments for a broadband system. "ICT in schools is an area where we have much in common. A conclusion is that we both share the view that ICT should be an important item on the school agenda," he said.

He also said that the countries have also found a common interest in the development of a `drivers licence' for IT.

"We think this is an area where we can have further common dialogue. Governments are involved in ICT and they are also increasingly communicating with their citizens over the Internet."

He also said that another aspect that the company Possio of Sweden highlighted in the discussion was the gateway between different wireless technologies.

"We have also introduced our development plans here in Brunei We are going to spend $1 billion in the present development plan and invite foreign friends to take part in our programmes," said Dato Buntar.

How do both countries go further in the ICT? He said as a follow up we see opportunities in establishing joint collaboration and cooperation in the future by holding seminars, exchange of programmes and regular business networking in ICT.

Swedish delegate, Ms Anita Jonsson, while highlighting on the conclusions reached in the ICT meeting, said, "Firstly, technical assistance in the policy and regulations in ICT industry development. There are opportunities for cooperation in relation to 3G technology development.

"Secondly, ICT human capacity building programmes for expert training in collaboration with Swedish companies like Ericsson and Possio, among others, and also to set-up centres of excellence for training and ICT talent development.

"Thirdly, ICT applications and services in research and development within e-government initiatives and eventually to the overall society, and also in enhancing cooperation in telecommunications equipment manufacturing in Brunei."

Meanwhile, His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf said yesterday that the trade and investment between Brunei and Sweden is limited. Speaking at the Sweden-Brunei business seminar, His Majesty however said that it's quite easy to increase that to sizeable figures.

His Majesty also urged the two parties to find out obstacles to trade barriers and hoped that this visit would lead to follow up meetings including seminars in Sweden as there are many sectors that the two countries could cooperate including tourism, business, environment and health.

His Majesty also called on the need to take care of the environment and save it for the future. He also hoped to see some of the local business entrepreneurs visit Sweden and visit their universities, science park and so on.

The Sweden-Brunei seminar yesterday began with general presentations by the Swedish side followed by two parallel round tables on environment/infrastructure and IT telecommunications respectively.

With regards to the setting up of an aluminium smelter and robber recycling plant, which Brunei is now pursuing, a Swedish delegate said environment technology and management needs to be in place and Swedish companies have the cutting edge technology to help Brunei in this aspect.

Speaking on tourism, a Swedish delegate said a MoU would be signed in a month to bring tourists from Nordic countries to visit Brunei. Royal Brunei Airlines (RBA} and Golden Touch AB is working on this.


Another article:

Though there is geographical distance between Brunei and Sweden and while histories, cultures and traditions are different, nevertheless there is much that the two countries have in common.

His Majesty the Sultan of Brunei underscored this point in his titah delivered at a banquet Saturday night at the Istana Nurul Iman. It was held in honour of His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf the King of Sweden and Her Majesty Queen Silvia, who are in the country for a three-day state visit.

The Sultan said, above all Brunei and Sweden share similar worldview.

"We may well be quite distant geographically and we have very different histories, cultures and traditions. But, nevertheless, there is much that we have in common. Above all, I think, we share a similar worldview.

"Like Your Majesty, we have a deep interest in preserving and enjoying a precious natural heritage and strong sense of national history.

"At the same lime, we are similarly conscious of the need to ensure that our people lead happy and fulfilling lives in today's world. We are well aware that this means not just a future based on mere survival," the Sultan said.

"It has to be one that enables them to meet the very real challenges of today with hope and confidence. And, as the Kingdom of Sweden has long demonstrated, these twin objectives need not be in conflict," added the Brunei ruler.

In his return speech, his Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf hoped that the state visit would result in growing commercial cooperation between the two nations.

Sweden is aware that Brunei is now trying to find ways to diversify its economy, to prepare itself when oil and gas may no longer be the main source of the country's income and that is where Sweden hopes to assist.

The Swedish king urged all nations to work together in search for the right way to freedom and peace. The world is now less secure than it used to be and the world now sees threats to humanity.

His Majesty the Sultan of Brunei said that Sweden and its people have been shining lights in upholding the universal values we ourselves cherish. I would therefore like to express our great appreciation, for the magnificent contribution your country has made to international peace, progress and security over so many years.

"We are also privileged to honour your own many personal contributions to these causes. We deeply respect the dedication you have both offered, not just to your own country but also to the strengthening of a world community that is caring, tolerant and informed," His Majesty said.

"Your presence each year when we see the Nobel Prize Awards in the Humanities and Sciences is far more than an official duty.

"It reflects your own long-standing commitment to the furtherance of universal knowledge, understanding and excellence. Your Majesties have also made a considerable commitment to the rights of those who are most vulnerable, the young, the disabled, the poor and the abused. These are concerns that the people of Brunei deeply share," His Majesty added

"Similarly your appreciation of the need to preserve the world's precious natural environment is one that we greatly admire.

"As your Majesty once remarked when addressing the World Scout Movement as its President, there is a need to change our world for the better, to build international understanding and peace; and to reduce fear by reducing ignorance.

"In your capacities as national leaders and as citizens of the world today, Your Majesties have steadfastly encouraged us all in our efforts to realise this vision," said His Majesty.

As of now, there are a good number of stories about the various places, the king and queen visited in Brunei. Visit http://www.brudirect.com/ before they go away. They are now on page 2.
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  #182  
Old 02-10-2004, 10:30 PM
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A little Dennisfication of an article found on the Expressen.se tonight. Expressen, it should be noted featured prominently on its home page an article about Anna Nicole Smith:

Göran Persson wants to talk to the King


The government has said that it would like to talk to the king about what happened in Brunei.

- I am not aware of what he has said or how he dragged out what he had expressed or said. It may be also that he may be sorry for what he said as well. If that is the case then I think it's okay to move on from here, said Göran Persson.

According to government sources, there is an initiative by the Court, to have a meeting between the prime minister and the king. It will have to wait until the two arrive back at home in Stockholm. (I think. Not sure. Something like that.)

Court spokesperson Elisabeth Tarras Wahlberg says that what the King has said about the Sultan of Brunei has been misinterpreted.

-The king had expressed his appreciation of the Sultan and of his(the Sultans) contacts with his subjects. He has not had a thought on how all of this should be interpreted or how this becomes a debate on the constitution or if it is constitutional while in Brunei and he is sorry for how it was interpreted, said Elisabeth Tarras-Wahlberg.

-The royal couple had travelled to Vietnam and Brunei for state visits and the king had told the government ahead of time of his position before the ceremonies.(He told them ahead of time of his trips. Something like that.) It is clear in the view of the Swedish government of what they deem to be a democracy for example when it comes to what counts as respect for human rights in a constutitional government(abstract) and one which allows an environment for questioning.(Something like that)

Prime Minister Göran Persson said in connection with a visit to Arvidsjaur on Tuesday that he will not comment further until he meets the king.

- The very least that one can do is to meet the king when he is arriving at home for one can appreciate something like that has occurred right up to there is a big change.(I think. Basically, keep with the protocol, I think.)

Is what the king in opposition to the government's official view of Brunei?

-This is exactly, from whatever if appears to be so far or( it is clear from what we know already) But I will also meet with him and hear his own version of it all, said
Göran Persson.

When asked if Sweden could ever have a head of state who was a dictator, he answered:

-I am not aware of what he has said or how he dragged out what he had expressed or said. It may be also that he may be sorry for what he said as well. If that is the case then I think it's okay to move on from here, said Göran Persson.

On Tuesday, three liberal party members from the standing committee on the constitution(they discuss constitutional matters) KU ) were trying to get Göran Persson and foreign minister Laila Freivalds to take responsibility for what happened.

The government and the foreign ministry approved the visits but were not able to or didn't advise the king sufficiently enough on the official Swedish view towards Brunei.

Public Relations consultant Henrik Westander thinks that the Court's staff or assisant, in front of the travelling press(couldn't find jansten) did not do their job on the trip to Brunei.(Yes, I would say so. Didn't keep it under wraps).

-One can go to Norway and not have to be required to prepare yourself but one only can one go to Brunei to see a dictator(Something like that.) and there already we already knew? that his journey could lead to a critical debate and so it doesn't make any sense that the King did not prepare for difficult questions or to know ahead of time what questions to leave alone or who not to answer a question from.

The king and Queen were touring Thailand until last night. They participated today in a ceremony to further collaborations between the Queen's World Childhood Foundation and the Thai foundation for the advancement of the status of women.
That foundation is under the sponsorship of Princess Soamsawali. The King and Queen also went to a zoo to take a formal visit to the Kolmårdens zoo to see 2 Thai Elephants, Saonoi Bua.(Something about opposite or pro and con but I couldn't get it.)
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  #183  
Old 02-10-2004, 11:16 PM
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Reading the various headlines of articles from the Aftonbladet and Expressen has made me a little sad. But there is some hope from some of the commentators. And the majority of those polled do not want the monachy to be abolish. Nor do they want Victoria to be queen now. I mean in the near future.

En storm i ett vattenglas

Anyway, I found this. I mis-translated. But it's easy to see my mistakes:

STOCKHOLM, Feb 10 (AFP) - Swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf apologized Tuesday for praising the Sultan of Brunei's "openness", after his compliments provoked an outcry in Sweden, where the sultan is considered a dictator.
"It was perhaps a little thoughtless but it was not my intention to step into the debate on Brunei's form of government," the king admitted, according to a spokeswoman for the royal palace, Elisabeth Tarras-Wahlberg.
In an interview with Swedish public radio during a visit to the sultanate Monday, King Carl Gustaf said that Brunei was "a country which is much more open than one may imagine".
"Every Sunday after his visit to the mosque, (Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah) holds an open audience where anyone who wants to can come and present his wishes, and presumably his complaints also," he said.
He also noted that the 57-year-old sultan, who has ruled Brunei since 1967, visited every village each year, "where there is every possibility of direct communication with all his subjects".
Brunei, an absolute monarchy located near the tip of Borneo island, has been repeatedly criticized by Sweden for its human rights record.
The Swedish foreign ministry's report on human rights in Brunei in 2003 states: "In Brunei the sultan rules with unrestricted power. Civilian and political rights are heavily restricted. Women are subjected to discrimination. Freedom of religion is limited."
The report notes that a state of emergency has been in place in the sultanate since 1962 and that parliament is suspended. The sultan "rules by decree".
Swedish Liberal deputy Birgitta Ohlsson was one of several parliamentarians who called for the king's visit to Brunei to be the subject of a constitutional standing commission.
"The king cannot express a political position," she said.
She and two other parliamentary representatives demanded Tuesday that both Prime Minister Goeran Persson and Foreign Minister Laila Freivalds explain to the assembly why the government and the Foreign Ministry approved the king's visit, but obviously didn't inform him properly of Sweden's official policy towards Brunei.
"It is irresponsible for him to be sent to a dictatorship without a minister who can present political criticism," Ohlsson said.
The constitutional standing commission will also examine whether the king's comments could be regarded as a breach of the Swedish constitution.
Persson refused to comment on the king's remarks, but said he would meet with him when he returns to Sweden.
"He is ... our head of state, he is abroad, and it would be extremely inappropriate for me as prime minister to start voicing opinions about what he has said or hasn't said," Persson told Swedish news agency TT.
The media had a field day with the king's blunder, with the widely-read tabloid Aftonbladet running the headline: "Stupid, king!"
A number of political scientists speculated whether this was the "beginning of the end" for Sweden's monarchy, with some even going so far as to call for the 57-year-old's abdication.
The royal family is hugely popular and respected in Sweden, as the king has over the years moved away from his image of a partying, dimwitted playboy youth towards that of a greying, respected statesman.


Stupid, Aftonbladet!

Yes, largely due in part to his Queen who saved the monarchy! Three Cheers for Silvia! Hip Hip, Hooray! Hip Hip, Hooray! Hip Hip Hooray!
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  #184  
Old 02-10-2004, 11:39 PM
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If there's one thing I can't stand is double standards. There has been so much criticism of the King for his state visit to Brunei and some of his comments. Yet, ironically, the Swedish government had no problem hosting the Jordanian King a few months ago. And if you want to talk about human rights, the violations in Jordan are notorious. It' no secret. Jordan is hardly a bastion of democracy either. Indeed, at least in Brunei citizens enjoy material benefits. In Jordan, for the most part, they have neither freedom of speech or material benefits.

Furthermore, so the King was complimentary to his host? So what? He was his guest. After all, Sweden *does* have diplomatic ties with Brunei. If Sweden has such a problem with Brunei's leadership and how the country is governed then those ties should be de-established. You can't have two policies towards the same country. Moerover, as an ally, it is important to encourage and compliment moves towards democracy. Everyone needs acknowledgement. In international relations it fosters dialogue and an an environment for further change. If the the Swedish government didn't want the King to do this (which is the partly the purpose of state visits) it should not have allowed the visit to go ahead in the first place.

The whole thing is perposterous, IMO. He and his wife have devoted their entire lives to representing Sweden. They've done an amazing job and have always tried to maintain an equalibrium (see, I can be a monarchist too ). I can only imagine how hurt they must feel. If If I were him I'd have half a mind to pack-up my family and leave. No one needs this kind of treatment. Bunch of ingrates, AFAIC.
  #185  
Old 02-11-2004, 02:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sean.~@Feb 10th, 2004 - 10:39 pm

The whole thing is perposterous, IMO. He and his wife have devoted their entire lives to representing Sweden. They've done an amazing job and have always tried to maintain an equalibrium (see, I can be a monarchist too ). I can only imagine how hurt they must feel. If If I were him I'd have half a mind to pack-up my family and leave. No one needs this kind of treatment. Bunch of ingrates, AFAIC.

Anyway, apparently some of the top companies in Sweden didn't have any problems with the Sultanate though. And neither did the government officials who travelled with the Royal Couple to encourage closer ties between Sweden and the Sultanate. But I didn't like the comments I've been reading about the Royal Couple and the monarchy in general. Chivalric Dennis was a little sad to hear these things. But the family will survive and one day there will be a Queen who will be regent and everybody will remember these days and think "He wasn't so bad but now we are really happy because we have Victoria as our queen. Now as for her prince consort...." Well, anyway
there is hypocrisy here. Not because of the Jordan thing. But because they surely expected the king to say these things. Pretty basic stuff for a state visit. I mean you could practically map it out ahead of time. And they approved of the trip. Get over it, everybody. A constitutional crisis is indeed an overreaction.
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  #186  
Old 02-11-2004, 03:16 AM
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Quote:
Anyway, apparently some of the top companies in Sweden didn't have any problems with the Sultanate though. And neither did the government officials who travelled with the Royal Couple to encourage closer ties between Sweden and the Sultanate. But I didn't like the comments I've been reading about the Royal Couple and the monarchy in general. Chivalric Dennis was a little sad to hear these things. But the family will survive and one day there will be a Queen who will be regent and everybody will remember these days and think "He wasn't so bad but now we are really happy because we have Victoria as our queen. Now as for her prince consort...." Well, anyway
there is hypocrisy here. Not because of the Jordan thing. But because they surely expected the king to say these things. Pretty basic stuff for a state visit. I mean you could practically map it out ahead of time. And they approved of the trip. Get over it, everybody. A constitutional crisis is indeed an overreaction. [/b]

I think there is hypocricy and a double standard on both counts. If you're going to be critical of one undemocratic leader then be critical of the other too. Especially since the King was the Sultan's guest whereas the King of Jordan was feted in Sweden itself.
  #187  
Old 02-11-2004, 03:39 AM
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Quote:
I think there is hypocricy and a double standard on both counts. If you're going to be critical of one undemocratic leader then be critical of the other too. Especially since the King was the Sultan's guest whereas the King of Jordan was feted in Sweden itself.
Yes, true. I see your point. Anyway, according to the Expressen there will be a Crisis meeting tonight

Anyway, people write to kungen@expressen.se. and tell them how you feel about this matter. Write in English. It's okay.

The King and Queen will be arriving back this afternoon. According to the Aftonbladet, the trip to Brunei cost about 41,000 US dollars and the trip to Vietnam cost $107,000 US Dollars. There were also several polls on the various Newspaper sites. A couple of which asked if Victoria should become regent now. The last time I looked one of them said 65% said no and 35% said yes.
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  #188  
Old 02-11-2004, 06:41 AM
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The King of Sweden HAS NOT GOT THE RIGHT TO MAKE POLITICAL STATEMENTS! That is what is wrong with what he has done, the Sultan of Brunei is not what you could call a democrate and the country is not a democracy! BUT the Department of forreign affairs should have taken that into consideration and choosed not to do the trip into a official visit! Now maybe Sweden have to invite the Sultan to an official visit to Sweden, because that is the normal way, as a courtesy after an official visit to another country you invite the head of state to your country.
I´m not affraid of Sweden becoming a republic in the near future, but maybe the King have to let go of the two things he still has got as part of the official political life in Sweden.

He is the Chairman of the "Utrikesnämnden" that meets and discuss Swedens forreign politics. He has not got any power, no right to make any disicions but he is the chairman anyway! ( Sorry I can´t tell you more exactly what the "utrikesnämnd" do, I´m a bit embarresed about that)

When a new ambassador from another country is coming to sweden he/she is invited to the King to leave his/her credentials! It´s a tradition of course, but why, when the King has got nothing to do with the political life in Sweden?!

I am a monarcist, as I hope you understand, but I really hope that the last remains of the old ways is now up to discussion! Then we will have a King that knows (hopefully) what´s expected of him, and act in that manor. And maybe we also have the right to know where all the apanage ( the allowance) is going, a part of that is never accounted for you know! That´s the only state fundings that the population of Sweden hasn´t got the right to see where it´s going!
  #189  
Old 02-11-2004, 10:30 AM
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maybe i don't understand what all the fuss is about. did the press criticize the king for praising the sultan of brunei? WHY???!
i live very near brunei though not in brunei and all i can say is that the sultan of brunei has done a great job in providing for his people. a lot of my relatives have been in brunei and they're all praises when it comes to describing the place. free education, free medical services, huge wages, no taxes and some people (ordinary citizens and not related to the sultan) are even given money to spend for personal stuff like their own groceries etc.
i've always thought of brunei as a great place, somwhat like the monaco of asia with a very impressive quality of life because of all the stuff that my relatives who've worked there say. and i know some who have actually interacted with the sultan, whether repeatedly or just once) and their impression of him is that he's a very kind and sincere man.
actually i've just realized that the western world might see the the sultan as a dictator. but i don't think the people of brunei see him as such. (yes he is filthy rich but the are well cared for. it's not like the situation of the philippines during the marcos era where the marcos family are enjoying all the worldly goods while the country is up to its ears in debt.)

Taxation Brunei
Brunei Gov't Link
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  #190  
Old 02-11-2004, 11:58 AM
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"The Swedish foreign ministry's report on human rights in Brunei in 2003 states: "In Brunei the sultan rules with unrestricted power. Civilian and political rights are heavily restricted. Women are subjected to discrimination. Freedom of religion is limited.""

Well, maybe then the Crown Princess should not have gone to Saudi Arabia then. Anyway, he was making a political statement by dealing with the government at all. The trip was approved by the government. Government ministers and business leaders went along on the trip. That's a political statement enough as it is. Opposition leaders surely knew ahead of time that they were going on the trip. Maybe he should have remembered government policy. However, he was buttering up the government. They didn't look over at what he said. And if all the controversary about Brunei is one thing, why don't they criticize the state visit to Vietnam then? That's not a democracy either. And they approved the trip there. Perhaps, indeed the king will invite the Sultan to Sweden as per custom after a state visit.

That being said there appears to be a sligh disconnect between the political leaders and t the "people". I mean beyond the readers of the Expressen and Aftonbladet. Even the Dagens Nyheter has a poll about abolishing the monarchy and people are against it. Mind you, it's closer to 50/50 than the polls on the other sites. But still. Maybe the majority will see this as political tongue-wagging by the politicians. And while, they may not agree with the King's remarks, they have forgiven him for it or choose to ignore it. Political leaders, move on. And don't say that Victoria should be queen right now. The process should be as smooth as possible when it happens one day far into the future.

Review of what some of the press has to say from the BBC:

"There have been renewed calls in the Swedish press for the abolition of the monarchy after King Carl XVI Gustaf complimented Brunei on its openness during a visit there.

"In practice, the country is a dictatorship," says Malmoe's Sydsvenska Dagbladet. "The population of around 350,000 lacks civil rights. There is no freedom of the press and no political opposition."

"Unlike the population of Brunei," it says, "the king can clothe his thoughts in words without risk of reprisals. As head of state he should think about what he says."
The king's statements on Brunei show that he forgot his job description
Dagens Nyheter

"The question has been asked before and it must be asked again: Why a monarchy?"

"The king must abdicate," reads the headline of a front-page article in Stockholm tabloid Aftonbladet.

In it, a university professor writes that a constitutional crisis is occurring in Sweden and predicts the eventual fall of the monarchy.

An article in the country's top-selling broadsheet, Dagens Nyheter, claims that the king has exceeded the boundaries of his mandate as head of state.

The king, it says, "should know the rules well. However, his statements on Brunei show that he forgot his job description."

The paper criticises the government for not intervening, saying that it is not the first time that the king has made political faux pas.

But these, it contends, "cannot match the king's defence of the dictatorship in Brunei and his almost enthusiastic comments about the country's autocrat".

Stockholm's Svenska Dagbladet, however, reports that the king has stated that he had not "intended to enter the debate about Brunei's form of government"."
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  #191  
Old 02-11-2004, 09:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dennism@Feb 11th, 2004 - 11:50 am
Review of what some of the press has to say from the BBC:

"There have been renewed calls in the Swedish press for the abolition of the monarchy after King Carl XVI Gustaf complimented Brunei on its openness during a visit there.

"In practice, the country is a dictatorship," says Malmoe's Sydsvenska Dagbladet. "The population of around 350,000 lacks civil rights. There is no freedom of the press and no political opposition."

"Unlike the population of Brunei," it says, "the king can clothe his thoughts in words without risk of reprisals. As head of state he should think about what he says."
The king's statements on Brunei show that he forgot his job description
Dagens Nyheter

"The question has been asked before and it must be asked again: Why a monarchy?"

"The king must abdicate," reads the headline of a front-page article in Stockholm tabloid Aftonbladet.

In it, a university professor writes that a constitutional crisis is occurring in Sweden and predicts the eventual fall of the monarchy.

An article in the country's top-selling broadsheet, Dagens Nyheter, claims that the king has exceeded the boundaries of his mandate as head of state.

The king, it says, "should know the rules well. However, his statements on Brunei show that he forgot his job description."

The paper criticises the government for not intervening, saying that it is not the first time that the king has made political faux pas.

But these, it contends, "cannot match the king's defence of the dictatorship in Brunei and his almost enthusiastic comments about the country's autocrat".

Stockholm's Svenska Dagbladet, however, reports that the king has stated that he had not "intended to enter the debate about Brunei's form of government"."
I think the question that should be asked is why did the government allow the King to go on a state visit to Brunei in the first place?

I do think the King should have kept his mouth closed. I am slightly old fashioned about Monarchy but constitutional monarchs in the eyes of of the consitution have no opinions since they are a figure head, so I see it as odd that many of todays Monarchs give interviews often...I guess I am just used being a subject Of Queen Elizabeth II who rarely gives interviews and never relieves anything in public.

I don't think the Monarchy will come to end because of this...granted I don't know a lot of about the popular attitude towards the royal family in Sweden, but I think there is more blame to be left at the door of the government then at the King.
  #192  
Old 02-11-2004, 10:24 PM
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Quote:
I think the question that should be asked is why did the government allow the King to go on a state visit to Brunei in the first place?

I do think the King should have kept his mouth closed. I am slightly old fashioned about Monarchy but constitutional monarchs in the eyes of of the consitution have no opinions since they are a figure head, so I see it as odd that many of todays Monarchs give interviews often...I guess I am just used being a subject Of Queen Elizabeth II who rarely gives interviews and never relieves anything in public.

I don't think the Monarchy will come to end because of this...granted I don't know a lot of about the popular attitude towards the royal family in Sweden, but I think there is more blame to be left at the door of the government then at the King.
I confess to being somewhat in the dark on these things. I figured the speeches were either written with the approval of the government or at least they had knowledge of them ahead of time. Speeches on state visits that is. I figred it was like the Queen's speech in Britain in that way. Basically, the monarch reads a speech written by the government. I mean most of these speeches are so uncontroversial and diplomatic that you could assume that. He was being too nice and diplomatic to his hosts. Let it by. Must be a slow week in Sweden for news.
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  #193  
Old 02-12-2004, 05:00 PM
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After all the reading I've done about Karl Gustaf's alleged gaffe in Brunei, I still can't figure out why the King's action is demonstrative of some corruption innate to the institution of monarchy. Would the President of a hypothetical Swedish Republic never have been capable of saying something similar?

PS: Wow, my first post. Hi.
  #194  
Old 02-12-2004, 06:29 PM
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It's just that he made a political statement and he's not supposed to do that. But he made political statements in his Christmas speech as well. I suppose it's just when he makes "political statements" that some Swedish politicians don't agree with that he is criticized.
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  #195  
Old 02-13-2004, 12:58 AM
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Quote:
Dennism  Posted: Feb 12th, 2004 - 5:29 pm

It's just that he made a political statement and he's not supposed to do that. But he made political statements in his Christmas speech as well. I suppose it's just when he makes "political statements" that some Swedish politicians don't agree with that he is criticized.
I would have thought that for overseas jaunts, that the Foreign Office staff/embassy writes his speeches .... how come they aren't being pilloried ?
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  #196  
Old 02-13-2004, 01:22 AM
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Yes. Good point. I quote from the Scandinavian Royals board:

"The government approves speaches, but there is no way it can control comments made during press-conferences or interviews, so the government cannot be blamed."

This doesn't make sense because it seem to me that it was done in a speech.

Also this is interesting:

"The government was hesitant, but the king insisted and in the end some civil servant in the Foreign Ministry approved of the visit to Brunei, and in the end of course also the Foreign Minister. The PM says he did not know about the visit to Brunei."

Anyway, here is the speech in question:



"Your Majesties,

Your Royal Highnesses,

Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentleman,

I am pleased to be back in Brunei Darussalam, this time on a State Visit. I was here briefly last year, but for the Queen this is the first visit. I would like to express our sincere gratitude for the invitation and for the very warm welcome that we received upon arrival today. Now we much look forward to the following two days, with an exciting and varied program. It will take us to see different parts of your society, which is not very well known in my country.

Sweden and Brunei have had diplomatic relations only since 1984, the year when Brunei attained full independence. I know that your country ever since has aimed at building friendly relations not only with my country but with many other nations as well. Another evidence of that is Brunei's engagement in a number of international organizations, among others the UN, WTO and ASEAN.

Brunei has been blessed with large natural resources but also with competent and creative people who have quickly responded to new trends in the world economy, science and other fields. I know that the country now is trying to find ways to diversify its economy, to prepare itself for the day when oil and gas may no longer be the main source of income. This is where Sweden hopes to be able to assist.

Sweden's economy has been re-structured during the past decades. In the old times, it was based more or less exclusively on iron ore and timber. Today the high tech industry and IT are new branches of comparative strength. We are proud to be the home of some of the world's leading industrial companies, positions they have reached by continuous change and adaptation, all necessary for economic development and for our industry to remain successful and competitive on the constantly growing markets.

During the next few days, there will be many opportunities to exchange views and experiences on these matters as well as on many other important issues, not least those related to sustainable development. The protection of the environment is essential to sustainability. It is really one of the pre-requisites for the future of the well-being of all mankind, along with other basic values like democracy, good governance and human rights. All these are essential elements in the development of a nation and it's building of a strategy for meeting the challenges of today's globalized world.

I am happy to note that environmental issues seem to be high on the agenda in Brunei, a nation that is the home of an important part of the world's remaining rain forests, with a rich diversity of animals and plants. The protection of the environment is close to the hearts of most Swedes not least to my own. This is why the Queen and I are very much looking forward to our excursion tomorrow to the rain forest and the Kuala Belalong Field Studies Centre. Research on biological diversity might be an area for a possible cooperation between experts in our two countries.

A number of Swedish business representatives have come to Brunei on this occasion. I am grateful to see so many of them being invited here tonight. They will be engaged in seminars and meetings with senior officials in your government and with their business counterparts.

The scope for increased trade and investments ought to be large between our two countries and the interest shown so far from both sides is promising, indeed. I sincerely hope that one of the results of this State Visit will be a growing commercial cooperation between our two nations in the future.

Brunei, so well located along major trading routes, has a history as a trading nation, dating back more than a thousand years when Brunei was a centre for trade that involved distant partners like China, India and the Arab world. It is interesting to note that at the same time as our Vikings sailed down the Russian rivers as far as to the Byzantine Empire and the Caliphate where they exchanged their goods for more exotic products from the East.

Both our nations have a tradition in trading and peaceful relations with others. Today when the world is less secure than it used to be and we are forced to see a number of new threats to humanity, all nations must work together in search of the right way to freedom and peace.

May I conclude by once again expressing our gratitude for this invitation to Brunei. Our two countries are indeed geographically distant from each other and our relations may not yet be extensive, but my sincere hope is that this visit will contribute in a constructive manner to future cooperation on the bilateral as well as multilateral levels.

Your Majesties, I wish you as well as all your family good health. May your beautiful country and its warm and friendly people live in peace and prosperity.

Thank you very much."
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  #197  
Old 02-21-2004, 02:41 AM
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I was just wondering how the marriage of Carl Gustaf and Silvia is viewed by the public, especially in Sweden. At times they seem so cute together and very loving and at other times they seem very distant and cold towards one another. Basically, I am just curious if they are seen as a happy couple or not, and if there have been any problems in their marriage in the past. Thanks!
  #198  
Old 02-21-2004, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lyle@Feb 21st, 2004 - 1:41 am
I was just wondering how the marriage of Carl Gustaf and Silvia is viewed by the public, especially in Sweden. At times they seem so cute together and very loving and at other times they seem very distant and cold towards one another. Basically, I am just curious if they are seen as a happy couple or not, and if there have been any problems in their marriage in the past. Thanks!
In the social life in Stockholm there has been rumors of CarlGustaf having an affair with a woman who works at TV, at the TVStation T4 news program; Anna Lindmarker. I have friends who says that they know it for certain, but it has not been in any papers that I have seen anyway.
I must say that their marriage don´t seem so happy anymore :(
  #199  
Old 02-21-2004, 11:46 AM
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The King and Anna Lindmarker?! are you sure? how do they know eachother?

this was interesting... :P
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  #200  
Old 02-21-2004, 12:15 PM
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INTERESTING...indeed...to be honest I like such little stories/rumours...shame on me! Now I´ve looked at IBL...and I´ve expected, that she is blonde, but she´s a similiar type as Silvia.
Probably it´s just a rumour...or they had an short affair and it´s already over. But I´ve to agree, that the Carl Gustaf and Silvia don´t look happy anymore...and I doubt, that only the long years of marriage are the reason...you can´t feel intimacy between them...usually long married couples have developed an own language (words, gestures...) and even when they don´t look like young people in love, there´s still a closeness, and everybody can notice, that they belong to each other like Chip to Dale...but I can´t see this in Silvia and Carl-Gustaf. He seems frustrated, and when you´ve watched videos, several photos you could have noticed, that it´s always her, who touches or praises him...

BTW I doubt that the swedish newspapers would write about it (at least as long as it isn´t noticeable for everybody)...they have written a lot of trashy stuff about the youngsters in the Royal family...and about such things like that, what happend in Brunai...but they have always respected the private life of their king and queen...
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