Left Party leader “threatened to quit”

The depth of the rift in Sweden's Left Party was revealed on Thursday with the news that the party's leadership, including leader Lars Ohly, threatened to resign after being fiercely criticised in an internal report.

The study, which was carried out in the spring, was leaked to Svenska Dagbladet. It described “personality clashes” and “an unbelievable contempt for weakness” among the most senior members of the party’s Working Committee.

“Everybody mistrusts everybody and we are weakening as a political power”, wrote vice chairman Ingrid Burman, who has announced her intention to resign from her position in January.

The report referred to a clash between modernisers and traditionalists.

Among the modernisers, reported Svenska Dagbladet, there is a general dissatisfaction with the way the party is branded as communist – and the way the leader Lars Ohly appears to strengthen that image.

On Thursday, Working Committee member Lena Karlsson attempted to dismiss the significance of the report.

“Sometimes there’s friction in group relationships, but as far as I know nobody threatened to quit,” she told Aftonbladet.