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    'Twice Shy' Swedish Navy Base Vexed by Archipelago Webcam Revealing Too Much

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    Amid incessant security concerns across Scandinavia, a Swedish Navy base has demanded a webcam installed by the municipality be removed in a bid to attract more tourists to the archipelago. The camera, which broadcasts around the clock, reportedly disclosed the navy's vessel movements.

    A webcam installed near the Swedish port city of Karlskrona has landed in hot water. While municipality officials had set up the camera on a local hill already seven years ago, in order to better showcase the beautiful Blekinge archipelago to curious tourists and interested parties, the Armed Forces belatedly argued that it was inappropriately placed, Swedish Radio reported.

    The webcam, which broadcasts around the clock on the Webcams.se website, also happened to disclose the maritime activities of the nearby marine base, the Armed Forces argued. The broadcast thus strangely empowered viewers to monitor the traffic of both surface ships and submarines.

    Karlkrona municipality tourist manager Terje Pedersen said that he has not been informed of any complaints from the navy base and claimed the cameras to be "quite innocent." Pedersen also stressed the fact that the webcam has been around for seven years without ever stirring any controversy. However, he also voiced the municipality's preparedness to remove it, should army bosses insist.

    The Armed Forces found the webcam situated on the water tower on top of the Bryggareberget mountain inappropriate, even if they admittedly did not regard it as a security risk.

    "It's not particularly appropriate for it to broadcast online, even given the poor resolution," Hans Åkesson of the Karlskrona naval base told Swedish Radio, contending that it revealed navy ships leaving and arriving at the base.

    However, the municipality was admittedly trying to set up even more cameras, given the positive feedback it has received.

    "We set up cameras because we want to spread the message of the beautiful views. And it is very appreciated, both by former Karlskrona residents and others. We are looking at more places, but it's very regulated where you can install webcams," Terje Pedersen told the Swedish tabloid newspaper Expressen.

    Even though the security situation has changed in recent years, the information that can be obtained via the webcam is rather limited, Pedersen argued.

    "The pictures do not have a very high resolution, and you can't even zoom in, so there's not very much you can really see," Pedersen said.

    Spread over 30 islands in the Blekinge archipelago and having a population of 35,000 inhabitants, Karlskrona is host to Sweden's only remaining naval base, as well as the headquarters of the Swedish Coast Guard. It has an exceptionally well-sheltered location, with surrounding islands providing a strong defense not only from the sea but also from land attacks, and is ice-free in winter.

    The city of Karlskrona was founded in 1680 specifically as a naval base, as the Royal Swedish Navy was relocated from the Stockholm area to gain a strategic position against Sweden's former archenemy Denmark. The shipyard in Karlskrona, which was established almost at the same time as the city, has long been the Nordic country's largest industrial employer. At present, the shipyard is owned by Saab Kockums AB, which is Sweden's main producer of warships and submarines.


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