• Sweden edition

Swedish embassy in Pakistan stays closed

Published: 20 May 2010 15:38 GMT+02:00
Updated: 20 May 2010 15:38 GMT+02:00

"We don't know when it will be possible to reopen the embassy," Tobias Nilsson said, refusing to say whether any direct threats had been issued against the mission. "We never comment on these kinds of security situations," he said.

The embassy said on its website on Thursday that "due to the security situation in Pakistan, the embassy of Sweden in Islamabad is closed until further notice". It did not provide further information.

Swedish interests have come under threat in Pakistan in the past. Two years ago, the Swedish embassy there tightened security after receiving threats following a suicide car bomb attack outside the embassy of its Scandinavian neighbour Denmark that left six people dead.

The Al-Qaeda terror network claimed responsibility for that attack, saying it came "in revenge" for Danish caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.

Sweden has recently landed in the spotlight after the revelation of an international assassination plot against a Swedish artist who has also drawn ire for a drawing of the Muslim prophet with the body of a dog.

An Al-Qaeda front organisation had offered 100,000 dollars to anyone who murdered the artist, Lars Vilks, with an extra 50,000 if his throat was slit. Vilks has received numerous death threats and in the last two weeks alone, been attacked while giving a lecture at a Swedish university and had his house firebombed.

Related links:

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

20:35 May 20, 2010 by voiceofreason
Islam is a religion of peace, bla bla bla.

The only peace Islam stands for is when everyone is a muslim. They can't stand anyone, anywhere contrary to their beliefs. How else do you explain riots in Pakistan or Nigeria over a Cartoon in Denmark. It is utterly senseless.
21:29 May 20, 2010 by cloud&rain
The country is getting quite intolerant. Their government have banned facebook, youtube and wikipedia for the Draw mohammed day event in facebook citing blasphemous reasons. Speak to pakistanis about twin tower atttack, most of them would say it was american conspiracy. Ask about mumbai attacks, they would say it is done by Indian government itself for a reason to attack pakistan. But when asked about attacks in their country they would point America, India, Afghanistan, and Israel. They consider taliban as outsiders, claiming that muslims would never kill another muslim. They are in complete denial about what is going on in their country. Pakistanis believe more in conspiracy theories more than themselves.
21:30 May 20, 2010 by coldfire
The important thing to note is: there are no Blasphemy laws which is sad for any sect of people in any country ON internet. If its the case of Islam, now, everyone is doing blasphemy and the blame is also on Islam. Thats such a bizarre world we are living.
23:01 May 20, 2010 by glamshek
I think it is high time to rethink the policies in the West. It is also true that most Pakistanis are biased when it comes to religion but the West is no less in its drive for freedom, sexist notions and imposing its own version of democracy atheist thinking. For now however, the message is clear: Stop it or neutral people will also start supporting Taliban. As long as the Death penalty for a blasphemy is concerned, it is not influced by any cultural or national law. It is supported by the very religion Islam, and luckily unanimously too. So unfortunately nobody can speak against it. Death to those who commit blasphemy.
00:42 May 21, 2010 by maakm
I wonder how Al-Qaeda have 150000 dollars.who the hell is paying them


I think you dont want to know the reality. American media showed themselves that 911 was an inside game. After Mumbai attack CIA agent latter confess that he planned the mumbai attacks and indian government does not have balls to ask USA for justice. And for your kind information pakistanis never heard the word "suicide attack" but after when American came in pak-afghan region. they were living in peace and the world was also living in peace.Think about it that how this war on terrorist started.
02:40 May 21, 2010 by cloud&rain
@ maakm.

This is the classic denial of a normal pakistani. Dude, go search the internet. You will find the truth. Which american media showed it was inside job?. Only those freelancers who put up some conspiracy theories did make some documentaries. Till you will deny such things that exist in your nation, more faisal would go out of your country and plot the failed american times square. And about your living in peace comment. Yes all pakistanis were jesus christ before and america made them suicide bombers. America went in to vietnam, japan and lot other regions, but I have heard no one killing innocent civilians like the way taliban do. The more you live in denial the more you will get hurt. Wake up, its not too late.
10:01 May 21, 2010 by calebian22
Civilization should not bow to anyone demanding death for blasphemy. How 7th century!
10:06 May 21, 2010 by ali_bin_umar

Let me put you in state of denial now.

Here comes your own country first "Incredible India"

Indian Army killed more than 85 thousand(85,000) innocent but dubbed as terrorist inside Kashmir since 1950.

10 thousand Sikh were killed, burnt alive in 1984.

State sponsored gang burnt alive 1000 muslims in 2002.

The span of killing has now extented to chiristian, maoist and low caste.


60 thousand(60,000) palestine ppl have been killed since 1950 by Isreal. Million has been made homeless and long list of atrocities which need not mention.


atom bomb killing+vietnam+iraq+afghanistan ... the answer would be more than what you can think of.

BTW most of Taliban operating in Pakistan when captured by Pakistan army were found un-circumcized... and all of them are brown coloured... like most of Indians and Pakistani.
10:41 May 21, 2010 by glamshek
Who told you that these are not Taliban who burn schools and beards and faces. A peshtun who is not an extremist Sunni can best tell you about that. One of that is here right here talking to you? Can you cover their black deeds from Me? Summon Bukmon Umyun Fahom La Yarjioon. (Al- Baqara)
11:07 May 21, 2010 by Fahad Waqas
what a reply ali bin umar DUDE you have good knowledge i salute you about this

and people listen one thing respect eachother pakistanis americans indians whatever nationalities you are I THINK IF YOU ARE A TRUE PERSON BY HEART no one will ask about your nationality they will respect you MIND it
11:08 May 21, 2010 by goodman7368
Why it is so important for west to draw sketches of Prophet Mohammad? There are billions and billions of other people available. If one religion say not to do it then why not to respect. please stop this bloodshed in the name of religions and respect and be respected.
11:08 May 21, 2010 by Fahad Waqas
what a reply ali bin umar DUDE you have good knowledge i salute you about this and people listen one thing respect eachother pakistanis americans indians whatever nationalities you are I THINK IF YOU ARE A TRUE PERSON BY HEART no one will ask about your nationality they will respect you MIND it
11:39 May 21, 2010 by raukey
this to me looks like a verbal war going on this forum, which is probably for a friendly discussion.

People with a limited understanding of cultural diversity and history are making commnents trying to pretend that they are expert. Its good to air your honest views but ganging up (some muslims names here) just for the sake of critisizing other countries and defening your obnoxious culture and way of life is no good.

I wil advice you "while in rome do as romas do!" you must follow the rules and law of this land if you really want to live here (and comments on these kind of forums!)
12:39 May 21, 2010 by cloud&rain
Being a Bengali I never care what you argue. Because we know what you people are capable of. Do you remember the first time in history where the 52 % majority of the people were labelled as traitors by the 48% minority people? And according to Bangladesh government reports about 3 million bengalis were killed by pakistanis. One of the worst and largest genocide in the history after the second world war.
13:19 May 21, 2010 by bbeynch
@glamshek: You know too much, and your offensive smears reek. Obviously. Sweden is well advised to permanently close its embassy in Islamabad, until such time that Pakistan enters the world of civilized nations. You should all google "Oriana Fallaci", a highly regarded, world renowned, italian journalist who died in 2006. She wrote; "The hate of the west dwells like a fire fed by the wind. The clash between us and them is not a military one. It is a cultural and religious one, and the worst is still to come." Well, it is now 2010, and she appears to have been correct. The - hopefully permanent - closing of the Swedish embassy in I-bad proves as much.
13:24 May 21, 2010 by ali_bin_umar

your fig 3 M is based on exageration and lie.. Though it was great set back in the history of sub continent, but a common citizen (Pakistani) can not be blamed for this. It is wholly solely politicians wrong decisions and rigid stance which led this debacle and offcourse followed by Indian support to insurgency. I know you are indian as common bangladeshi doesnot have supportive argument for Isreal the way you wrote it. Get a life and be positive now.
13:43 May 21, 2010 by ali_bin_umar
@bbeynch Your definition of "Civilized nation" might differ with other 194 countries in the world. If the prophet of 160 million people is rediculed and insulted , so you should not expect civilized reaction then. The same is applicable to every faith. If you publish naked queen of UK, or try it with Japanese emporer, or for that matter indian bagwans(god), you will not get smiles but protest and might be more from the same civilized countries... So keep your definition of civilization with you and instead we should try to learn how to respect (if you know the meaning of this word) each other cultural and religious values which are global and acceptable.
13:43 May 21, 2010 by ali_bin_umar
14:16 May 21, 2010 by calebian22
There is a huge difference between protesting an insult and killing people because of an insult. It is hard to imagine the Japanese or the Brits killing anyone over a caricature.
14:17 May 21, 2010 by bbeynch
@ali-bin-umar: You're spinning.
14:59 May 21, 2010 by cloud&rain
@ ali_bin_umar.

Where the hell did I supported Israel? Speak to any pakistani about bombings in pakistan. Most of them say it is done by outside forces, and their fingers always point to america, india, israel. Telling this truth does not make me a supporter of israel.

//Though it was great set back in the history of sub continent, but a common citizen (Pakistani) can not be blamed for this. It is wholly solely politicians wrong decisions and rigid stance which led this debacle and offcourse followed by Indian support to insurgency//

Did the politicians working in the army or the common citizen? Who did the dhaka university massacre, politicians or common citizen in army? Who did the systematic rape and killing of bengali women, politician or common man in army? You are trying to deny the atrocities done on the ground. Instead shifting blame on politicians and making it a political problem. The grievances of people started in language movement and got in to wildfire during 1970 bhola cyclone when the nation laid helpless. And you didn't want bengalis to rule and that made the spark. And I don't want to argue with somebody who denies their wrongdoings.
15:53 May 21, 2010 by goodman7368

Strongly condemn the extremist act of the so

called defenders of 'freedom of speech'. This is not freedom of speech,

rather attack on others belief. They are in no way different from those

extremists who think as imposing their belief on others, is their duty.
15:58 May 21, 2010 by glamshek

I think the reply that you liked was more of your bias. Same bias that says Taliban are not the culprits, it is someone else. Well every attack that happens nowadays is being done by Talib or his co-sectarian bigot. For the last 28 years I have been listening to their vitriols against normal people of all walks of life. 28 years , I have spent with these Bigots, my friend. Have you ever seen or met a Talib even once in your life time? This is not a single day phenomena, it has been since the time of Zia Ul Haq, the notorious military dictator who did not even know where his body parts have shattered in Air bomb. God is the best judge.
16:09 May 21, 2010 by testUserName
@ ali_bin_umar: great work. keep rain&cloud busy... even if we believe you Bangladeshi, you are just showing your personal grudge... i know the rivers full of gold flowing in your country...

Look at the following link on wikipedia Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen_Bangladesh,

Jagrata_Muslim_Janata_Bangladesh, Hizb-e-Abu_Omar, Harkat-ul-Jihad_al-Islami
16:56 May 21, 2010 by calebian22

Freedom of speech/expression includes blasphemy here in the Sweden. Blasphemy is not the same as killing someone. Putting the two on par with each other is upsurd.
09:58 May 22, 2010 by munched
I don't know if this is relevant but Prime Minister Rudd of Australia had this to say recently. Probably one of the few Politicians not worried about being politically correct.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd - Australia

Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told on Wednesday to get out of Australia , as the government targeted radicals in a bid to head off potential terror attacks...

Separately, Rudd angered some Australian Muslims on Wednesday by saying he supported spy agencies monitoring the nation's mosques. Quote:

'IMMIGRANTS, NOT AUSTRALIANS, MUST ADAPT. Take It Or Leave It. I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali , we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Australians. '

'This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom'

'We speak mainly ENGLISH, not Spanish, Lebanese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society . Learn the language!'

'Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right wing, political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture.'

'We will accept your beliefs, and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours, and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us.'

'This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR LAND, and OUR LIFESTYLE, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great Australian freedom, 'THE RIGHT TO LEAVE'.'

'If you aren't happy here then LEAVE. We didn't force you to come here. You asked to be here. So accept the country YOU accepted.'
10:52 May 22, 2010 by Uncle

60 palestinians were killed by Israel? Where did you get the figure "Hezbollah today"? The palestinians as they are now, did not even exist until 6 day war. They were citizens of Jordan and Egypt. After arab countries were grouping on Israel in packs of 3 to 8 - of course ARABS got killed.

At this stage, about 5 thousand palestinians were killed of which 600 were killed by palestinians and 1 thousand Israelis were killed (mostly civilians) in Second intifada.

In first intifada, 1 thousand palestinians were killed by Israelis and 1 thousand by other palestinians. That is IT!

In Jordan 25 thousand palestinians were killed by Jordaninans.

Egyptians, Lebanese and Syrians killed more palestinians that you could imagine (mostly civilians). Kurds were eliminated in tens of thousands by Turkey, Iraq and Iran, but you would not give a ...

These figures make your disinformation absolete...

And what is funny - as usual, any discussion of muslim violence, is attempted to be diverted towards the west and Israel. Thanks God, even europeans start to see through these crude tactics.
11:13 May 22, 2010 by ali_bin_umar
Approximately 1.5 million Palestinian civilians have died since 1948,including the victims of the ethnic cleansing campaigns in the west in 1948-50 and in the east since 1967. Civilian deaths have escalated dramatically in recent years since the zionists developed their obsession with the Palestinian birth-rate,and children are often the target. There is only a small fine for killing a Palestinian in cold blood. It's based on a weapons charge,not murder. To understand the genocidal character of this vile regime,one need only glance at the responses from zionists; at least half advocate or at least imply approval of the killing of non-jews. Adocating genocide is by the way a reportable offence on Y/A. Aproximately 2000 civilian Palestinians are killed each year. If you are jewish and you shoot an 8-year-old Palestinian girl in cold blood,you will have your weapons license revoked for three months and pay a fine equivalent to 50-100 dollars U.S. It's considered by the "government'"to be more or less the same thing as shooting squirrals within city limits with a .22. would be in America. Zionists love to murder Palestinian children and they do it all the time. The military handles the mass-murders. We are not talking about suicide bombers or militants; those figures fall into another category. I am referring to wanton killing of civilians.


Pappe,Itan. "The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine" (Oxford,2003).

Amnesty Internation Annual Report (years 2000-2007).

Hass,Amira. "Drinking the Waters at Gaza" (1996).
11:56 May 22, 2010 by glamshek
@ali and Uncle

Both of you are biased. It is pretty clear that these Zionists want pressure and plunder on Palestinians for their own survival. This is one big reason. Secondly Egypt, Iraq's Saddam, Saudia, Jordan are the biggest helping hand of these Zionists. You are pointing fingers at Iran, but what would you say when Iran was calling everybody to save Palestine, but the damned Billion dolar man leader Yasir Arafat himself ditched Palestine. The Al-Fatah , Saudia, Egypt, Jordan, Saddam are the Meanced tail of Satan. Why don't you come unbiased? Even now Hizbollah, Hamas and Iran are a source of general support for Palestine. If Saudia, Egypt, and Jordan are sincere, why aren't there any practical steps coming out. These cowards cannot fight for their brothers but they are top in line for the claims.
13:51 May 22, 2010 by europeman31
This is the great example of Western Media propganada. as

- One reason is that the Swedish Embassy has been closed for 3 weeks

now, where as the article states that it was shutdown this week due to

security concerns. So wrong information!

- Secondly, the incident with Lars Vilks in Uppsala university, took

place about a week after Swedish embassy's closure. This incident had

nothing to do with the closure. Then why are these being connected and

blame being put on East ..

Pretty simple, Open your mind ...
20:43 May 22, 2010 by pallvisha
how to come to stockholm from pakistan..any suggestions!!!!!!!!!how to get the visa!!!!!!!
10:44 May 23, 2010 by Uncle
This ali sent me a personal message with the same bull. It is clear that all of these are easily proven lies. There is no link to the actual report from Amnesty, but their name (in order to show credibility and add to the blogs of the extremists that bring these numbers).

I will not repeat everything, but a simple visit to Wiki shows the actual figures. What else is that the territories were not under Israeli control until 1967. Second intifada - the bloodiest conflict with palest. took lives of 5K palestinians and 1 K Israelis (learn this word, it is here to stay).

At the same time Jordan killed 50K palest. during Black sept. event. Egypt, Lebanon and Syria cleansed full areas of palestinians. Kurds had 50K dead only from Saddam (unclear how many from Ayatollas and Turks). Somalia - 400K dead. Sudan- 300K dead.

I am quite tired to argue with the Himmler lies about Israel, while they are murdering people in millions.

Just to compare these 3rd world medieval strongholds to Israel

@pallvisha - you should murder someone and then request political refuge. Sweden will give you a passport already in Islamabad.
15:11 May 23, 2010 by asim513
There are so many people who think civilization started in Europe or America. They still live in dark ages. Pakistan is not only a country but also a civilization born before 5000 years ago. Indus valley civilization, that flourished in current Pakistan, was one of the four civilizations that flourished on this planet earth. It is as old as Chinese, Babylonian and Niles civilization. The cities of Indus valley like Mohenjo Daro and Harappa were sophisticated and technologically advanced and well planned cities. Harappa has the world's first known urban sanitation systems, in 3000 B.C. What was happening in rest of the world at that time.....living in caves. So it is better for everybody first to check the history of your country before saying anything bad about my great country, Pakistan.
Today's headlines
Elections 2014
Reinfeldt better at handling a crisis: Poll

Reinfeldt better at handling a crisis: Poll

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt's hopes for remaining in office has been given a boost after more Swedes said they had greater faith in him handling a crisis compared to election rival Stefan Löfven. READ  

Gaza & Robin Williams: Swedes' Google habits
Actor Robin Williams. Photo: AP

Gaza & Robin Williams: Swedes' Google habits

The internet search giant has revealed what Swedes googled for most over the summer period with the top 10 made up of diverse search topics ranging from sport to wasp stings READ  

Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons
Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons

A man in central Sweden was sentenced to prison for aggravated assault on Friday after doctors noticed that both his twin sons had sustained serious and unexplained injuries. READ  

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Clocking in. File photo: Shutterstock

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial

Officials finalized plans on Friday for the "Gothenburg guinea pigs" who will test out the six-hour workday, a move it's hoped will cut down on sick leave, boost efficiency, and ultimately save Sweden money. READ  

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job
Photo: Gunnar Lundmark/TT

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job

Three Swedish soldiers risk prison after they were found to be drunk while guarding Stockholm's Royal Palace. The men, who were all armed at the time, were charged on Friday. READ  

What do the Swedes do when summer's over?
Photo: Isabela Vrba

What do the Swedes do when summer's over?

The heatwave is well and truly over, the days are getting shorter, and winter is coming. With this in mind, The Local's Isabela Vrba chatted to ten Stockholmers about how they plan to tackle the autumn. READ  

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend
Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend

Swedes are spending more than ever on makeup - and a growing chunk is going directly to their fingernails, new figures showed on Friday. READ  

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops
The pharmacy section of a grocery store. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops

After a drastic increase in the number of paracetamol poisonings in Sweden, authorities have said the drug should only be available in pharmacies. READ  

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden
File photo: Andreas Hagerman/Flickr

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden

After finding traces of listeria in ham sold in Sweden, food companies decided on Friday to recall several Danish cold cuts. READ  

Sweden Floods
More rain expected as floods hit day four
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

More rain expected as floods hit day four

UPDATED: Sweden's floods showed no signs of abating over Thursday night, with highways closed, emergency teams working overtime, and more rain on the way. READ  

'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Sweden elections: How do they work?
People-watching August 20th
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Blog updates

17 August

Sea Fever (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as its not something I take any pleasure in writing. After much deliberation I have made the heartbreaking decision to abandon my trip after 1200km due to reoccurring injury. It is not a decision I have made lightly and it is one that has been truly devastating..." READ »


17 August

St. Louis strong (Blogweiser) »

"It’s typically a bad sign when my hometown makes news in Sweden. St. Louis was in the headlines here a few years ago when a tornado struck the airport. The city also caught attention after a politician talked about ‘legitimate rape’. Now, shooting and riots this week in Ferguson, a part of St. Louis, are..." READ »

"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
'Assange will not leave until safe'
See more images from the southern Sweden floods
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
People-watching August 16-17
Sweden celebrates 200 years of peace
Top ten literal Swedish words
'Terror training should be illegal': Liberal Party
Swedes talk about 200 years of national peace
Islamic extremist shakes Sweden with TV threat
Teacher fined for 'Hitler salute' in German class
Kiruna residents talk life in a town on the move
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at: