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Nazi activity increases in Sweden: report

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10:49 CET+01:00
Swedish neo-Nazi groups were more active in 2012, according to a new report, while the number of groups operating within the white power movement has declined.

According to a new report by the Expo Foundation, neo-Nazi groups carried out 1,824 activities in 2012, an increase of 24 percent on 2011 and signifying a break in a downward trend since 2008.

At the same time the number of groups operating within the racial ideology movement has declined from 25 active organisations in 2011 to 18 in 2012, continuing a decline from 40 groups registering activities in 2008. According to Expo this trend indicates a concentration with several groups having merged.

The national socialist Party of the Swedes (Svenskarnas Parti, SvP) and The Swedish Resistance Movement (Svenska Motståndsrörelsen , SMR) are the most active groups, with 1,024 and 435 reported activities respectively.

Activities are defined as anything from the spreading of propaganda, demonstrations/marches, crimes and/or internal activities such as parties and lectures.

SMR activists have been linked to the murder of Joakim Larsson in Vallentuna near Stockholm in September. A 17-year-old and an 18-year-old with links to the organisation have since been charged with the offence which the prosecutor has stated was motivated by their political convictions.

The group have also claimed responsibility for the attack on an anti-racist demonstration in Stockholm suburb Kärrtorp on Sunday. The 50 or so neo-Nazis attacked the demonstrators with fire-bombs, glass bottles and sticks but were ultimately forced to retreat and flee.

The Party of the Swedes, which was formed out of the remnants of The People's Front (Folkfronten) in November and the National Socialist Front (Nationalsocialistiskt front), has managed to attract a number of disgruntled former members of the Sweden Democrats and National Democrats.

At the 2010 election, the SvP became the first National Socialist party to get a seat in a Swedish political assembly since the end of World War II after claiming 2.8 percent of the votes in the municipality of Grästorp in western Sweden.

The Local reported last month that the party had claimed responsibility for a coordinated action at various Swedish media offices, leaving a calling card warning of "anti-Swedish propaganda".

"We can confirm that it is members and sympathisers of the party who are behind the action," Stefan Jacobsson, The Party of the Swedes' leader, told The Local at the time.

The Sweden Democrats, which hold 20 seats in Sweden’s Riksdag, have made attempts to broaden their political platform with leader Jimmie Åkesson recently pledging to “talk less” about immigration in return for the chance to influence government policy.

The party however continued to be hit by scandals throughout the year with several party members reprimanded or expelled due to various indiscretions.

Expo’s full report on Sweden’s racial ideological movement will be published in its upcoming magazine.

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