Sledding family met with assault rifles

A Stockholm dad who brought his two little daughters out sledding beside the Royal Palace had his family outing rudely interrupted by palace guards bearing loaded assault rifles. "Are they going to shoot us now?" asked his three-year-old girl.

Jon Karlung, 43, lives in Stockholm’s medieval centre, Gamla Stan, with his wife and their two daughters, Saga, 3, and one-year-old Nelly.

On Sunday he decided to take the girls out for a sled ride, Expressen reports.

“The nearest slope to our home is the one by the palace,” Karlung told the newspaper.

After a few trips down the hill on the sledge one of the palace guards lost patience with the family.

“Desist!” he screamed at the dad and his two girls.

Karlung put the girls in the sled and walked over to the guard, who was standing in a sentry box around 100 metres away.

But by the time he got there the serviceman had called for reinforcements. Three further guards bearing loaded AK5s fitted with bayonets arrived on the scene.

“You are hereby ejected from these premises,” barked one of the guards.

Karlung tried in vain to reason with them.

“I might as well have been talking to the wall,” he said.

The palace’s garrison manager Richard Beck-Friis Häll is critical of the guards’ reaction.

“If the family was out sledding and didn’t disrupt anybody or break anything then they had the right to go sledding there. The sentry seems to have been over-zealous,” he told Expressen.