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Terror-accused Swedes' US extradition 'a failure'

Published: 08 Jan 2013 08:58 GMT+01:00
Updated: 08 Jan 2013 08:58 GMT+01:00

Sweden's foreign ministry has labeled as a "failure" its inability to successfully bring two Swedish citizens home from Djibouti before they were extradited to the United States to face terror charges.

The two Swedes were detained in Djibouti in August after having left a terrorist training camp in Somalia run by al-Shabaab, a United States-designated terrorist group linked to al-Qaeda.

The Swedish foreign ministry launched negotiations with authorities in Djibouti for the two Swedish nationals, both of Somali origin, to travel back to Sweden.

But before negotiations were concluded, the two men were taken to the United States to face charges of participating in weapons and explosives training with al-Shabaab during a four-year period beginning in 2008.

"If you can say that we proposed to have them come to Sweden and that they didn't come to Sweden, I guess you could call that a failure," foreign ministry spokesman Anders Jörle told Sveriges Radio (SR).

Meanwhile, relatives of one of the men have suggested that the Swedish foreign ministry may have been complicit in the still mysterious process that resulted in the two men, aged 27 and 29, awaiting trial in the United States.

The brother of the 27-year-old said his brother told him that American agents who interrogated the Swede said they were awaiting approval from the Swedish foreign ministry before extraditing him to the United States.

Jörle has said that the Swedish foreign ministry was not involved in the process, but was unable to confirm or deny whether or not Sweden may have given its approval to the extradition.

"I don't have any knowledge of that," he told SR.

According to family members, the two Swedes had initially travelled to Somalia to join al-Shabaab, but had later regretted the move and were attempting to leave the group.

While the news came as a relief to family members, they became increasingly concerned for the pair's safety.

"He said that he was very scared and had seen people be executed," Hassan Yusef, brother of the 29-year-old, told SR.

The 29-year-old's lawyer has previously said that the defendants have not committed any crimes against the US.

"American authorities believe that al-Shabaab, which has been designated as a terrorist group by the United States, propagates its activities on the internet and therefore 'affects American foreign trade'. In that case more or less anything falls within American jurisdiction," lawyer Ephraim Savitt told the TT news agency in December.

The men appeared in court in New York together with a 23-year-old Briton. They were aided by a Swedish interpreter.

If found guilty, they could face up to 30 years in prison.

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Your comments about this article

09:28 January 8, 2013 by byke
Afraid the local made another mistake.

The 2 Swedes and one Brit, as the local claims is wrong.

There is no Brit, on trial.

There is a person who had British residency in the past, but had his residency terminated. Thus such association is wrong.
10:14 January 8, 2013 by bourgeoisieboheme
At least they will get proper punishment, a lengthy term, and an uncomfortable stay in prison in the US. If they went to the Swedish courts it would be a slap on the hand and back to the streets even though they are admitted terrorists.
10:31 January 8, 2013 by thecritic
There are no swedes either.
11:25 January 8, 2013 by Achilles7
I do wish they'd put "Swedes" in quotation marks.
12:09 January 8, 2013 by Gardian
they are swedish citizen and there is no need for quesation or quatation mark. I am a native swede and I would never denny there rights for fair trail but some who are not native swede with foreign background do.

have you ever asked yourself who gave them the right to become swedish. before you give us lessons about how to run and govern our counrty.
13:04 January 8, 2013 by Onourway
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
14:29 January 8, 2013 by RobinHood
@Gardian

Swedish citizens are committing terrorist offences in Denmark, Somalia, Iraq, Somalia, Kurdistan and Syria. These Swedish citizens cause death and injury to hundreds/thousands of innocent people. I believe the Swedish citizens in Somalia are particularly good at removing people's arms with an axe.

If ever there was a country in need of lessons "about how to run and govern [sic]" itself, it is Sweden.

The US is well aware of Sweden's lenient attitude to its citizen terrorists. You can hardly blame them for by passing what counts as justice in Sweden, and dealing with the matter themselves.
16:53 January 8, 2013 by thecritic
A few times somebody called me a "swede", I got offended, I asked them...do I look that stupid?
18:26 January 8, 2013 by Nick N
@Gardian: They're Swedish citizens, but they are not Swedish. They are Somalian. They don't have Swedish parents, the're not born in Sweden, they neither accept nor respect Swedish people, culture, values or even law.

BTW, I'm Swedish and if Centerartiet a.k.a. Bondeförbundet stays in parliament after the next election, we actually WILL need lessons about how to run our country.
20:43 January 8, 2013 by da Truth
wow i guess this is were all the Sverigedemokraterna, SD hangs out ha...@Gardian you the only one here with brain so jst wana say bravo and well said dude.
21:24 January 8, 2013 by thecritic
There is no point to argue with these modern day slaves. They are as helpless as it can be, there is no more room left to compromise between the left and the right anymore, just one thing left to do and that's it! Hey SD, good luck with your democracy, by the time you win the majority in parliament, the swedes are already a minority in your country.
21:33 January 8, 2013 by Gardian
@ thecritic

if you got offended by that , you do not deserve such honor.

Nick N

It depends on who you want to replace them in the parliament, I hope not SD. for one simple reason throughout Europe and north America there is no one country give voice to racists groups running on nationalist and often racist platforms, in other words from streets into governments.

You cannot get people's vote with intimidation campaign. !!

The only thing I got right from SD, was ''Sweden will end up Muslim country'', they said '' Muslim immigrants means, Sweden will became Muslim by : 30''.

As of 2012, according to Statistics 'Sweden reported that around 270 thousand inhabitants of Sweden are from Muslim background such as: - Somalia, Iran, Turkey, Iraq. I guess these are the countries that SD considered them as enemies of Sweden and therefore all the immigrants who are originally come from these countries will be return back immediately. (if 2014 SD run sweden).!

While the other inhabitants with foreign background are welcome in Sweden such as: - former Yugoslavia, Italy, Spain, Poland, Romania, Thailand.... which are by the way the majority. !

The same statistics shows that 95% of second generation of Muslims immigrants are adopting the system easily and fully integrated.

So for SD lets talk about facts figures. the swedish people are wise enough to understand your cheap kids policy.
23:00 January 8, 2013 by thecritic
This mus lover idiit is chewing too much KHAT!
23:23 January 8, 2013 by johan rebel
A failure! On the contrary: a great success for noce.

We do not want any more Somali terrorists in this country, we have plenty already.
06:04 January 9, 2013 by jonathanjames61
I think they must have forgotten the African proverb,that says you don't bite the fingers that feeds you.So let them dance the music they started.Its is said,when a masqurade dance to long in the village square he will surely turn to human and not spirit as people may think.So may be the Americano will turn then to better thinking humans.
10:49 January 9, 2013 by rise
How nice and delightful it is with all these culturally enriching new "Swedes"! As a regular native Swede I feel so enriched by the rise of crimes, rapes, terrorism etc.

Skåne today is the north part of the middle east. It is part of Sweden and Europe no longer. Oh how wonderful it is. Destroy our own culture even more! It's nothing but bloody racism anyway. :P
15:26 January 9, 2013 by thecritic
In 10 to 20 years, sweden will descent into chaos and war, it's inevitable. And when that happened make sure you remember the mus lovers for their successfully helpped integrated the mus and give them their rewards. As of now, there are 600,000 mus in sweden and growing, but these mus lovers try to hide the truth as you can see. "95% of second generation of mus adopting the system and fully integrated"? Well, congratulation sweden, you are the first country anywhere to do so, because the rest of europe or anywhere else for that matter is utterly failed!!!!!!!! Ask Angela Merkel, David Cameron and the french about their "banlieues"...
19:06 January 9, 2013 by jvtx3232
I agree with Nick N in post #9. People from Somalia can never be "Swedes" no matter what. The very idea is absurd on its face.
20:11 January 10, 2013 by andrewsrocks
Thanks you USA for making the world a safer place to live! Jail all those terrorists!
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