Suspected sub sighting sets Swedes on edge

The Swedish military is investigating what could be a sighting of a foreign submarine in the Swedish archipelago after a Stockholm resident snapped a photo of a lurking mass on the surface while walking her dog.

Suspected sub sighting sets Swedes on edge

Early in the morning in April Hanna Harge went to walk the family’s puppy when she suddenly saw something massive appear in the water outside the family’s seaside house.

“I saw this huge and odd object surface out of nowhere. Then over the next 15 minutes or so it passed by. It disappeared by the trees next to our boathouse. My first thought as that it had to be a submarine,” Harge told The Local.

She immediately ran inside to wake up her two teenage sons who hurried out to snap some photos. The pictures show what looks like a turret and the body of a submarine in the midst of the backwash of water.

The family thought it must be a Swedish navy exercise.

“My husband wanted to e-mail the military to say that residents of the area should be warned, so that no one would run into the submarine. But they answered that they had no information of any exercises in the area, “ said Harge.

The day after the family received a call and was later paid a visit by the Swedish Marine Intelligence service (Marintaktiska stabens underrättelsetjänst).

“They were here a couple of hours and questioned me and my oldest son. They reconstructed the whole event,“ said Harge.

When Harge asked the intelligence officers what they thought she might have seen they told her that it could simply be a question of floating cargo containers, according to Dagens Nyheter (DN).

But after comparing the photos with YouTube footage the family have their own theory.

“It is funny because Swedish submarines look nothing like this thing we caught on camera. But the box-like shape of the turret we saw looked very much like the Russian submarines we have since seen online,” Harge said.

They don’t think that it is likely to be a case of espionage.

“Spying by submarine just feels so ’80s’ somehow, one must assume they too have come further within that field, it just seems so dated. Instead we believe that it has to do with some sort of smuggling,” Harge said.

The family decided to take the picture to the Swedish media on the advice of a journalist friend of the family.

“But it felt right to wait for a while, as the intelligence officers that visited us were certainly treating this as a serious matter,“ she told The Local.

The Swedish military are reluctant to comment on what they think that the sighting was.

“We are examining the photographic evidence to see what it could be. But the investigation is by no means finished,“ said Marie Tisäter from the Swedish military information department to DN.

According to the Swedish military they will have finished the investigation within the next two months.

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Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Monday 

Find out what’s going on in Norway on Monday with The Local’s short roundup of important news. 

Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Monday 
Oslo Operahus. Photo by Arvid Malde on Unsplash

Norwegian government to unveil more details around Covid certificate 

On Monday, the government will issue guidelines on how exactly its Covid-19 certificate will be used domestically.

At 3pm, the government will hold a press conference where they will reveal more about how the Covid-19 certificates will work.

The certificate launched on Friday, but so far, the government have been sparing with details on how it will be used. 

READ MORE: Explained: How to access Norway’s Covid-19 certificate 

They have, however, revealed the certificate would be used for access to large events as well as tours and cruises within Norway. 

We will have all the details on how the certificate will be used covered in an article later today. 

Ministry of Defence: No signs of espionage 

There is no evidence to suggest that Danish data cables were used to actively spy on Norwegian politicians by the US, Defence Minister Frank Bakke Jensen has told parliament. 

At the end of May, Danmarks Radio reported that the US used Danish data cables to spy on politicians across Europe. 

“These are serious allegations that the government takes very seriously. Based on what we know, it does not look like there has been activity (espionage) directed at Norwegian politicians,” Jensen said in a statement. 

READ MORE: Norway summons US embassy top official over spying claims 

“Systematic espionage is completely unacceptable. We are clear to the Danish and American authorities about this. We are also in active dialogue with Danish and American authorities and services about the information regarding this matter,” he added. 

One in ten Norwegians plan summer holiday abroad 

Only ten percent of respondents to a new survey have said they plan on going on holiday abroad this summer. 

According to the survey by employer organisation, Virke, the majority, 60 percent, said that their travel plans have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. 

Fewer children are being adopted from abroad in Norway 

In 2020, 46 children were adopted from abroad in Norway, half the number of foreign adoptions compared to 2019.

According to new figures from Statistics Norway, the number of foreign children being adopted in Norway is also less than 10 percent of what it was in 1998 when 795 foreign adoptions were registered. 

A total of 243 adoptions were recorded in Norway last year, almost 100 less than the year before. 

One of the reasons fewer foreign children are being adopted is that countries that have previously released children for adoption abroad can now take care of these children themselves, according to Statistics Norway.

96 new coronavirus cases

On Sunday, 96 new cases of Covid-19 were registered in Norway, 89 fewer than the seven-day average of 185. 

Fewer cases tend to be registered on weekends and public holidays than on weekdays. 

The R-number or reproduction rate in Norway is currently 0.9. This means that every ten people that are infected will, on average, only infect another nine people, indicating that the infection level is declining.

Total number of Covid-19 cases in Norway. Source: NIPH