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Climate, Arctic on the agenda as Prime Minister Rinne visits Iceland

The five Nordic prime ministers are to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel for a working lunch.

Pääministeri Antti Rinne puhuu medialle Suomen ulkomaanedustustojen päällikköjen vuosittaisessa kokouksessa.
Rinne is making his first visit to Iceland as prime minister. Image: Antti Aimo-Koivisto / Lehtikuva

On his first visit to Iceland since taking office in June, Prime Minister Antti Rinne meets on Monday evening with his Icelandic counterpart, Katrín Jakobsdóttir. Besides bilateral and Nordic issues, the two are to discuss the Arctic Council.

At a meeting in Rovaniemi in May, Iceland took over as chair of the eight-nation organisation after a two-year Finnish term. Besides the five Nordic states, it includes Russia, Canada and the US.

On Tuesday Rinne and Jakobsdóttir join the other three Nordic prime ministers for their annual informal summer meeting in Reykjavik. Besides Nordic cooperation, they are to discuss climate policy and other current international issues such as the fate of the families of ISIS fighters now in a refugee camp in Syria.

Left-leaning PMs

As Finland's MTV news notes, four of the five premiers are leftists, including Rinne's fellow Social Democrats Stefan Löfven of Sweden and Mette Fredriksen of Denmark. Jakobsdottir represents the Left-Green Movement while Norway's Erna Solberg is the only conservative among the group.

Also attending are representatives of the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland, as well as German Chancellor Angela Merkel. She is to join the premiers for a working lunch.

Measures to combat climate change will again be on the agenda along other global issues and German-Nordic cooperation.

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