Birgitta Ohlsson Sweden's New EU Minister
Birgitta Ohlsson of the Liberal Party has been appointed Sweden's new EU Minister, Swedish Radio News reports. Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt officially announced the appointment of the 34-year-old politician at a press conference in Stockholm on Tuesday.
Ohlsson will take over the job from fellow party member Cecilia Malmström, who has since been nominated to fill the post of Swedish EU Commissioner.
"Cecilia Malmström has been an outstanding EU minister, it will be difficult to fill her shoes," Ohlson said at the press conference.
Commenting on the appointment, Ohlsson says that she considers the EU to be Sweden's most important foreign relations tool, and that she plans to promote democracy and workers’ freedom in her new role.
Birgitta Ohlsson had been among the names speculated to get the job, but was initially discounted because of her history of going against the party line in a number of issues, including a controversial wiretapping law. Her current pregnancy had also been cited as a reason why she would be passed over for the post.
But Ohlsson brushed off the issue at the press conference. "I live in the year 2010, no female politician should have to choose between being a politician and being a mother. I am married to a modern man and not a dinosaur."