Persson ‘disgusted’ by Liberal violation

Prime minister Göran Persson has said he is "disgusted" by the attempts of people within the Liberal Party youth movement to access the Social Democrats' internal computer network.

The affair could affect the result of the election, Persson said.

He was echoing early comments from his party secretary Marita Ulvskog, who said her party’s election campaign has been damaged by the actions of two officials at the Liberal Party’s youth wing, who accessed the Social Democrats’ intranet without authorization.

Marita Ulvskog said her party was taken completely by surprise last Wednesday when a journalist started asking questions about the breach. Since then, her party’s security officers have been trying to discover how often the system had been violated.

Ulvskog said it was hard to define in exactly what way the party’s campaign had been affected, claiming that it was the overall knowledge gained by the opposition that was damaging.

“When they are sitting there with the same knowledge about our election campaign as we have in the leadership of the Social Democratic Party, then it affects things in a way so maybe you can’t point to individual details.”

Ulvskog said that it was good that Liberal leader Lars Leijonborg had been guarded in his comments, but said that is was discouraging that he had not addressed the question of how far confidential information had formed the basis of the Liberals’ actions in the election campaign.

“I have noted that he has not given guarantees about anyone other than himself. We want him to guarantee that leading representatives [of the Liberal Party] have not been involved in this,” he said.

The press secretary of the Liberal youth wing (LUF), Per Jodenius, has admitted accessing the Social Democrats’ intranet and has been fired. Another senior member of the youth party and parliamentary candidate from Skaraborg resigned last night after admitting accessing the governing party’s network.

Some of the violations of the Social Democrats’ system have been traced to the computer of Nina Larsson, secretary of LUF and a parliamentary candidate. She has denied having accessed the network, saying that she shared a room with Jodenius and that they often used each others’ computers.