In their haste to welcome new members of the European Union to the fold, German map-makers were last week rather negligent of some of the old.
A map commissioned as part of a general campaign of welcome to the enlarged EU by the German press ministry simply left out Finland. The map was presented so that all that was left of the EU's most north-easterly member state was just an unnamed blip.
The Finns, however, did not take too kindly to having nine years of EU membership simply brushed out and were quick off the mark to put things right. The Austrian press agency (APA), reported that the Finnish embassy in Berlin wrote to the press ministry to remind them that they have been members of the EU since 1995 and would like a correction.
The map appeared last week in a number of Germany's big newspapers. The text accompanying it gave reasons why the EU was enlarging - one of them being "a greater degree of cultural and intellectual diversity".
According to the APA, a spokesperson said that the mistake happened for purely technical reasons. As it turned out, much of Northern Sweden and the Atlantic islands owned by Spain and Portugal had also gone missing. (EUobserver.com)