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Swedish report Swedish report
by Euro Reporter
2010-07-05 08:55:11
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Pirate party to host torrent site in Parliament
 
The Pirate Party, who has a seat in the European Parliament, is aiming to get into the Swedish Parliament in the upcoming General Election in September. To up the ante, they now declare that if they win a seat they will use the parliamentary immunity to host the well-known torrent-site The Pirate Bay from inside the parliament.

“Since The Pirate Bay was founded in 2003, the copyright industry has constantly tried to sabotage and prevent both its servers and users from communicating,” they write in a opinion piece in newspaper Aftonbladet. Something they feel is a problem affecting free speech as well as the internet infrastructure. When a German court recently denied the website The Pirate Bay to be hosted on a server in the country, the party stepped in and became internet service provider for the torrent search engine.

Since the Swedish constitution says that MPs can not be sued or prosecuted for something that is done as part of their political mandate, the Pirate Party want to use this “get a short respite from the copyright industry's legal barrage”. “The Pirate Bay would then sail with immunity until copyright laws have been reduced and the site's legal status is clarified.”

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Huge lead for Reinfeldt in voter confidence poll


An overwhelming majority of Swedish voters consider Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt better equipped to lead a government than opposition leader Mona Sahlin, according to a new Skop poll. When asked which of the two leaders has the skills it takes to lead a government, 75.5 percent of respondents selected the incumbent prime minister, with 24.5 percent opting for Social Democrat party leader Mona Sahlin.


Almost all voters with centre-right sympathies, 98 percent, said they would place their trust in the Moderate Party leader. By contrast, just 54 of those backing the Red-Green coalition alternative reckoned Sahlin was the right person to head a government.  Reinfeldt’s lead was less convincing when voters were asked which of the two candidates would be most fun to sit beside at a dinner party: 58.5 plumped for the prime minister, while 41.5 percent would prefer to sit down for a chat with Sahlin.  Skop’s poll results are based on interviews carried out from May 30th to June 15th with 1,100 people in the age group 18-84.

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Sweden's prostitution law a success


A law criminalizing the purchase of prostitution has helped halve the number of streetwalkers in Sweden's cities, but the country is still facing a growing problem of sex sold over the internet, a report published said. "The evaluation shows that the ban on the purchase of sexual services has had the intended effect and is an important instrument in preventing and combating prostitution and human trafficking for sexual purposes," the report said.

The report, which was handed to Justice Minister Beatrice Ask on Friday, maintained "that prostitution in Sweden, unlike in comparable countries, has not in any case increased since the introduction of the ban" on buying sexual services went into effect in 1999. It is not illegal to sell sexual services.  While the law punishing the client rather than the prostitute may not have caused a dramatic drop in prostitution as a whole, its true triumph, according to the report, is that "street prostitution in Sweden has been halved."

"This reduction may be considered to be a direct result of the criminalization of sex purchases," it said. The drop in street prostitution has been a little less dramatic in Stockholm than in all of Sweden, but the capital nonetheless saw its number of streetwalkers drop from 280 in 1998 to 180 in 2008, according to official statistics quoted in the report. Before Sweden became the first country in the world to criminalise buying sex, the number of street prostitutes in its capital was on a par with the number in the capitals of neighbouring Norway and Denmark.

But while the number of streetwalkers was slashed in Stockholm during the decade ending 2008, they had multiplied in Copenhagen and Oslo in the same period, the report said. Norway introduced similar legislation to Sweden's on January 1, 2009. The Swedish law stipulates that "purchasing a sexual service on one single occasion is sufficient for criminal liability," whether with money or other means such as alcohol or drugs.


     
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