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POLITICS

Sahlin fears for her party’s future

Social Democratic Party Leader Mona Sahlin is worried about her shrinking party.

“If developments continue, this party won’t exist in 10 to 15 years,” she said to the labor organization Unionen in Gothenburg on Wednesday, according the Göteborgs-Posten newspaper.

The Social Democrats lost 19,000 members last year. The 16 percent drop is the largest in more than 10 years.

At the close of 2007, the party had a total of 101,158 members, compared with 120,091 one year earlier.

Membership has been cut in half since the 1990s.

Government parties also dropped thousands of members last year.

“The problem for all political parties can be illustrated by the fact that the national organization of pensioners (PRO) has more members than all of the political parties combined,” said Sahlin, who maintains that difficulties in recruiting new members and age demographics are facts of life.

“Just the fact that I am included among the younger members of the party says quite a lot,” said the 51-year-old party leader.

POLITICS

‘Next stop Kabul’: Sweden Democrat slammed for ‘racist’ tweet 

The Sweden Democrat MP Tobias Andersson has been criticised for a “disgraceful and racist” tweet in which he posted a picture of a train on the Stockholm Metro which the party has paid to have covered in its logo. 

‘Next stop Kabul’: Sweden Democrat slammed for ‘racist’ tweet 

Calling the train the “return-migration train”, he wrote: “You have a one-way ticket. Next stop Kabul!”. 

The Centre Party’s leader Annie Lööf said that the tweet was “disgraceful and racist” while the Liberal Party’s leader Johan Pehrson, who is hoping to join a government with Swedish Democrat support, said it was “tragic” and that Andersson “should be ashamed”. 

Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson denied that the tweet was racist. 

“Return migration policies are not racist,” he said. “Our return migration policies are built on being voluntary. It is a way of creating a better society for us and for those who have not found their place here.” 

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