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Saturday, 20 October 2018

Sweden to relocate Swedish Institute in Alexandria due to 'practical difficulties'

18 years after its inauguration, the Swedish Institute in Alexadria is set to be moved to a new location

Eslam Omar , Friday 28 Sep 2018
SwedAlex
The Swedish Institute (SwedAlex) in Alexandria
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The Swedish Institute (SwedAlex) is to be relocated due to "practical difficulties" the institute revealed on Thursday.

"Sweden has cancelled the agreement with Egypt on the establishment of the Swedish Institute in Alexandria. The dialogue that the Institute has focused on will not cease, and will continue," reads a statement published by the institute.

The statement explained that the Swedish government has judged it necessary to relocate the activities of the institute as a result of "practical difficulties" that included the "termination of the rental agreement for the house and the limited travel connections to Alexandria."

"The intention is to relocate to another venue in the MENA-region as soon as possible," SwedAlex said, elaborating that "the Swedish presence in Egypt through the embassy in Cairo will not be affected by the decision".

"Sweden's broad engagement in the Middle East and North Africa region remains steadfast and Sweden will continue its strong commitment to dialogue between cultures and civilizations," SwedAlex concluded.

The Swedish Institute was inaugurated on the 3 October 2000 by the Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs Anna Lindh and Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Amre Moussa in a building on the Corniche on the eastern port.

Their main objectives are "strengthened democracy and increased respect for human rights" alongside "increased understanding between populations in Europe and the MENA region".

The SwedAlex activities included intercultural seminars, workshops, music concerts, theatre performances, art exhibitions, training programs and various cultural activities for residents of Middle East and North Africa region. Topics covered include media, women rights, freedom of speech, the environment, and heritage in addition to hosting key figures from Sweden.

SwedAlex
The Swedish Institute in Alexandria (SwedAlex) organised activities related to their motivation to 'strengthen democracy and human rights respects' (Photo courtesy to SwedAlex)

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