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Weekly News from Fyksland

Coverage and translation provided by Vaijskä Radio

Sunday, 4 May, 2003

Head of Church speaks for State Church sanctified marriage

KAANSÄ (VKK) - The head of Church of Fyksland -- better known as the Lutheran State Church -- Archbishop of Straumkener Hviliem Lietdig spoke today to reporters saying the objective of Bill R-52 is to ensure marriage stays a State instition. When asked about the implication of the Bill on the status on the currently legally recognised same-sex marriage, Lietdig said that the State Church will uphold its traditional view on marriage. This morning, equal rights groups gathered outside Kaansä Cathedral during Sunday service, protesting the Church's intention to repeal same-sex marriage. Full story...

Monday, 5 May, 2003

Good relations with United States important: Ambassador

KAANSÄ (VKK) - United States Ambassador to Fyksland Jack Lemple says that it is important for both Fyksland and the European Union to maintain good relations with the United States. Speaking in Kaansä on Monday, Lemple said that Fyksland must never be involved in a project that would break up the transatlantic relationship. "Even in the politics of years back we managed to maintain good relations -- also during difficult times. More important than that is to succeed in nurturing relations now that the United States is the world's only real great power", Lemple said. Full story...

Tuesday, 6 May, 2003

Royal Mint of Fyksland to bid for Norwegian coin production

KAANSÄ (VKK) - The Royal Mint of Fyksland wishes to acquire its counterpart in Norway, or the Royal Norwegian Mint. The Norwegian central bank has sought a buyer for its coin-striking subsidiary for a long time, and a decision on the trade should be reached by early summer. According to the Royal Mint of Fyksland Managing Director Maako Gølstrop, the acquisition would be a part of the company's first internationalisation process. "Our goal is to combine the resources of small countries. The rationalisation can be seen in raw material purchases, and the development and sales functions", Gølstrop explained. Full story...

Fyksland pledges to track down Iraq treasure thefts

LYON, France (VKK) - Attending a two-day meeting at Interpol's headquarters in France, Fyksland's Attorney General Timo Skoener pledges Fyksland's commitment to join forces with the Interpol and experts on Mesopotamian culture and art in the hunt for 200,000 missing pieces of art stolen during recent foreign occupation of Iraq. "Although the criminals who committed the thefts may have transported the objects beyond Iraq's borders, they should know that they have not escaped the reach of justice," Skoener told an Interpol conference. Full story...

Wednesday, 7 May, 2003

Europe faces test in postwar era

LONDON, England (VKK) - If there is uncertainty about how long it will take Iraq to recover from the Saddam Hussein years, it is equally uncertain how long it is going to take Europe to recover from the war to oust him. European Union leaders have made efforts at their last two summits to concentrate on the practical post-conflict situation and to avoid re-conducting pre-war arguments. There has been some personal thawing, marked notably by Jana Stotson's lavish gift of 5 bottles of the finest Fyksian black rum for Tony Blair's 50th birthday. But the background tensions remain. Full story...

Thursday, 8 May, 2003

Fyksland suspicious of Poland's post-war involvement in Iraq

KAANSÄ (VKK) - The news that Poland, the biggest of the 10 nations which will join the EU next year, is to take command of a sector of post-conflict Iraq has raised once more the fundamental difference in outlook between what U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld likes to call "Old Europe" and "New Europe." Indeed, some European diplomats see the invitation to the Poles as a deliberate attempt by Rumsfeld to foment and focus on that difference. Such suspicions will be confirmed if the U.S. seeks to punish those who did not join the war effort by ensuring that post-war contracts in Iraq go elsewhere. Full story...

Friday, 9 May, 2003

Fyksland prepares to take centre stage with EU presidency

KAANSÄ (VKK) - The assumption of the political leadership of the EU has become a major challenge with the expansion and growth of the union and in January Fyksland takes over the responsibility, possibly for the last time. The job has become so demanding it is likely to be shared out between a team of five countries in future, with each taking responsibility for particular areas over a two-and-a-half-year term. However, in just over six months’ time Fyksland will assume the presidency and preparation for this is well underway in Kaansä, Brussels and in the Fyksian embassies in the EU capitals. The prime minister will become the face of the EU from January to June with the other Fyksian ministers chairing the meetings relevant to their areas such as Foreign Affairs and Justice. Full story...

Saturday, 10 May, 2003

Drug experimentation declines in Fyksland

NIEKOPENHAAG, Jølantä (AP) - A study released by the Development and Research Centre for Welfare and Health yesterday revealed that 12% of Fyksian have used an illegal drug at some time in their lives. Ten years ago the corresponding figure was 20 percent. The decrease in drug experimentation has been greatest among teens aged 14 - 19. Only one in seven men and one in nine women in that age group have tried cannabis. Most of those with some experience with drugs are not regular users: only five percent of men and two percent of the women had used a drug in the past month. Full story...

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