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European Journal

Scandinavia: Trouble in paradise

Lapland, a region as large as Denmark in the far north of Europe, is home to only a few thousand people. But ever since half the world set its sights on Sweden's reserves of iron ore, the face of the north is changing.

A British mining company wants to build a mine west of Jokkmokk and recklessly promised its investors it was on unpopulated land. That has infuriated indigenous people such as the Sami. They fear the destruction of their forests, clean drinking water and grazing grounds for their half-tame reindeer. But the mining company wouldn't be the first that got its way at the Sami's expense.