The Social Democrat politician, formerly secretary of state at the Justice Department, was employed as an analyst for the Swedish Security Service (Säkerhetspolisen – SÄPO) after his party’s election defeat last autumn.
Before Thursday’s announcement he had been tipped as a possible successor to former SÄPO chief Klas Bergenstrand, who died earlier this year.
“I have not received an offer of that nature but I have received this offer, which I consider to be an important and honourable task. As such, it seemed natural to accept,” Eliasson told news agency TT.
He added that he looked forward to helping asylum seekers get the protection to which they were entitled. As for criticism of the Migration Board’s role, Eliasson said he was not unduly concerned.
“I don’t view that as a major problem. Anybody who is a democrat can see that the Riksdag has been almost unanimous in its support for the regulations as they appear today. This means that I, as a democrat, am bound to follow these regulations,” he said.
Eliasson is due to begin his new job as early as next week. He will replace Janna Valik, who has been appointed as new director general of Government Offices.