• Sweden's news in English

'Military should free Dawit by force'

TT/The Local · 27 May 2009, 07:41

Published: 27 May 2009 07:41 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“Eritrea and the regime there have chosen to kidnap a Swedish citizen; that is unacceptable. Therefore I think that we should consider a military strike to free Dawit,” Moderate Party youth head Niklas Wykman told the TT news agency.

“I believe Dawit has certain rights as a Swedish citizen and we should protect them.”

He added that his suggestion, detailed in an opinion article published on the Newsmill.se website, deserved serious consideration.

“It is absolutely a serious proposal which I think should be considered,” he said.

Wykman’s views came on the heels of an interview conducted by Sweden’s TV4 with Eritrean president Isaias Afwerki during which he explained that there were no plans to hold a trial for Isaak or to release him.

“Sweden can’t back down from a dictator who unjustly imprisons one of our citizens,” Wykman writes on Newsmill.se.

“We can’t sit quietly and wait for his oppressors to release him.”

Isaak came to Sweden as a refugee more than two decades ago, taking Swedish citizen ship in 1992.

Isaak returned to Eritrea without his family to work for an independent news magazine when the country gained independence.

He was arrested in September 2001, after the magazine published an open letter from political dissidents and has remained in prison ever since.

“Now we see Eritrea’s president saying clearly that he is uninterested in having a dialogue with Sweden. He don’t want any diplomatic negotiations, he doesn’t want a trial, but instead says that they have their own way of handling this. We also have our way of dealing with our citizens, I believe: we should protect them,” Wykman told TT.

Story continues below…

Wykman was skeptical about the chances that diplomacy would eventually lead to Isaak’s release.

“Now Dawit has been in prison an incredibly long time and at some point you have to ask yourself how long we can accept that he’s been held kidnapped,” he said.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

10:02 May 27, 2009 by Gower76
Is this Wykman guy insane? What makes him think Sweden even has the military capability for such a thing, never mind the political will?

Let's hope his political career goes no futher than the youth party - he doesn't have the judgement to handle any real power.
10:47 May 27, 2009 by Dazzler
LOL its cute how Niklas thinks the Swedish military holds any weight, whatsoever.
11:50 May 27, 2009 by tigger007
that's really funny to hear a swede demand anything!

he must be part swede and part ex president bush! why does sweden feel it has to prove itself to the world,just be yourself. let the big boys handle the rest!
17:03 May 27, 2009 by odinmp5
this guy is quite naïve.

i guess he does not know that comunist guerrillas kidnapped a swedish citizen (roland larsson)in colombia almost killing him, while at the same time the swedish government gave full support to this organization by funding their international headquarters in stockholm.

Sweden is going down the drain.
17:27 May 27, 2009 by Celc
What are you people smoking Eritrea has 1/300th of the GDP of Sweden. Yes Sweden doesn't have a military that's useful for any form of mass invasion thing but we are talking about a country with less GDP than Liechtenstein for crying out loud.

I have little doubt that would the military of Sweden want to enter Eritrea to set free a prisoner or drop a few bombs there would be little that country could do about it.

What I'm wonder is why we don't petition the EU to use it's muscle against Eritrea, if hes a Swedish citizen hes an EU citizen. What's the point in being a member of something that doesn't protect it's citizens.
19:03 May 27, 2009 by CLiv
:O...Swedens military force..what military force, sorry but you have to laugh at it. Is this guy for real. I do agree though that something needs to be done. Lord knows if anyone of us were sitting were Isaak is sitting, we would like to think our country would help us. Were is EU in all of this..oh, that is right, EU is a worthless organization that has done nothing for our country.
19:44 May 27, 2009 by Kaethar
I see everyone on this board agrees with George W. Bush regarding his claims that Sweden has no army.

Sweden has a small but highly developed army. It would be easy to storm Eritria and free Dawit. Why isn't it an option? Because it goes against international law. It's this law the US has broken many times (by invading countries to change leaders they disagree with, etc) and which is why they're so hated around the world.

To me this looks like a provocative statement made on purpose in hopes of scaring the Eritrian government into letting him go (on their own terms). They would really loose face being invaded by Sweden, after all.
19:49 May 27, 2009 by Tutu
I am not surpised at the comments of people on this forum. The president of Eriterea was right by saying that Sweden is irrelevant. He called Swedish bluff by saying that they cannot rescue him. We can only bark but not bite. The ineffective noise of Sweden is even complicating matters for Dawit. I am not asking for military action, but are we going to allow this man to die in detention.
23:12 May 27, 2009 by Merik
I think its hilarious that you think its funny that somebody act on something wrong. I got a kick out of that.

I agree with him, Secret dungeons bad, botomless pits bad,

do something about it,

Talk to the U.S. talk to the U.N. do something,

how would you like it if your brother or sister got dropped in a botomless pit, shees lol, you swedish peeps are hi larious. Yaya
21:12 May 28, 2009 by spy
Sweden's greatest recent military action was to capture a handful of Somali pirates in a speed boat earlier this week and the press were all over the story as if Sweden had just repelled Norway from a full scale invasion.

The thought that Sweden could mount a rescue without any special forces or a forward operating base is pretty naive.

The only way to secure release is through international pressure and this should be a priority. However Niklas Wykmandone should be applauded for applying pressure on the Government and keeping Dawit Isaak's plight in the eyes of Sweden.
00:53 May 29, 2009 by free_in_sweden
Dear Wykman, I am an Eritrean refugee in Sweden. I want to thank the Swedish people and government for protecting help less people like me and speaking the word of truth against tyrants like our dictator in Eritrea. I salut you for the proposal you made and your efforts to ensure human rights and I even want to join your party if that is possible. That man do not understand the language of diplomacy. God help us all.
10:18 May 29, 2009 by hannhanna
I think use of muscles is the only way to communicate with dictator Isaias Afeworki. Do you know in ten years after Eritrea got its independence, the guy went to war with ALL the neighbours...Yemen, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Sudan...I bet he's not sane. I say there should be a coordinated effort among all EU states, USA, Canada and Israel and even the the African Union and the UN to get rid of this guy before he brings further damages to Eritrea and East Africa, not to mention his current meddling in Somali affairs by delivering weapons to the terrorists...
16:54 May 29, 2009 by sonofhama
I commend Mr. Wykman for his courage in speaking up in deffence of a fellow citizen of Sweden, who is in illegal detention in Eritrea. The Eritrean dictator must be threatened with military action because that is the only language that he understands. However, the same result can also be achieved through pressure from EU. It is amazing that a citizen of Sweden has been in prison for seven years without the benefit of a trial!!
02:13 May 30, 2009 by Haile
I am an Ethiopian. I found this topic interesting.

I do disagree with the idea of military solution. That is a stupid idea actually. Let us say Sweden air strikes in Eritrea, how many innocent people can be caught in the strike, probably many or not. But in practice, this will involve alot of loss of lives. And there is no point if one kills 100 or less people to set free one person.;
13:34 May 30, 2009 by kaze
It could be done easily. People here really don't understand how militaries work I see. Its the trouble of transporting the troops down there that is the main problem, not the act itself.
20:55 May 30, 2009 by wenddiver
Stop being silly, send in a SEAL team from a carrier and get him, ask for help, before he gets killed.
08:51 May 31, 2009 by Dr.Tilahun
For reasons beyond me Norther Europians have been supporting the cause of Eriteria for so long; really without understanding history, culture and etc. Now you see what what is going on? That so called "country" belongs to one person and is governed as such. Sweds, Think twice before supporting so called "independent orgs."

FEEL so bad for this man and his family; still, a country like Sweden and EU to have waited so long?

This human being and others, unknkow by name, have to freed! This is 2009, and to read a story like this is so very sad.

As an Ethiopian, may he and many others be free and join their families.

Now we hear and read much about the current doings of "Eritera" ( sad to say when it is affecting countries beyond the Red Sea); UN, EU and in general the world has to do something about this "country."

Hope all ends in well for ALL THOSE THAT ARE IN DAWIT'S SITUATION.
13:46 May 31, 2009 by Faunaman
Another "Swede" who got himself into trouble. Sweden is eager to make new citizens, they should give citizenship to 0,1% of chinese population....
14:40 May 31, 2009 by Playmaker
look as a ex- combat soldier i can tell you it would not be that hard. move your special forces (which are good and have proven themself's in the Afgan war)to the nearest location possiable a couple of jets a dozen chopters. and just go in at night and do it. there will be loss of life but are they innocent? if they help keep a man prisioner because he just gave his views of the country then they are not innocent. You must fight for freedom of speech it is worth it.
17:40 May 31, 2009 by sodafox
I think we need to pass the hat around... I don't think Sweden's armed forces are up to this...
18:00 May 31, 2009 by Bender B Rodriquez
Yeah, it was a success in Mogadishu...
00:11 June 1, 2009 by Coalbanks
Could work, could fail with more hostages/prisoners prosecuted for attacking the sovereign nation of Eritria.
Today's headlines
Refugee crisis
Asylum requests in Sweden down by 70 percent
Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

The unique story of Stockholm's floating libraries
The Stockholm archipelago book boat. Photo: Roger Hill.

Writer Roger Hill details his journeys on the boats that carry books over Stockholm's waterways and to its most remote places.

Refugee crisis
Second Stockholm asylum centre fire in a week
The new incident follows a similar fire in Fagersjö last week (pictured). Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect arson in the blaze, as well as a similar incident which occurred last Sunday.

More misery for Ericsson as losses pile up
Ericsson interim CEO Jan Frykhammar presenting its third quarter results. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The bad news just keeps coming from the Swedish telecoms giant.

Facebook 'sorry' for removing Swedish cancer video
A computer displaying Facebook's landing page. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

The social media giant had censored a video explaining how women should check for suspicious lumps in their breasts.

Watch this amazing footage of Sweden’s landscapes
A still from the aerial footage of Sweden. Photo: Nate Summer-Cook

The spectacular drone footage captures both Sweden's south and the opposite extreme, thousands of kilometres north.

Sweden could be allowed to keep border controls: EU
Police ID checks at Hyllie station in southern Sweden. Photo: Stig-Åke Jönsson/TT

Sweden could be allowed to keep ID controls on its border with Denmark beyond the current end date of November, following discussions among EU leaders in Brussels last night.

Why women in Sweden will work for free by November
File photo of a woman working in a Swedish office. Photo: Anders Willund/TT

A new study into the gender pay gap suggests Sweden still has some work to do.

Look familiar? Meet your jawbone's ancestor
Thank God for evolution, eh?

There's something fishy about the human jawbone – it has its origins in the placodermi, a jowly species of fish that lived 400 million years ago, Swedish and Chinese researchers say.

Isis claims unremarked arson attack in Malmö
The arson attack took place on Norra Grängesbergsgatan in Malmö. File photo: Emil Langvad/TT

An arson attack in Malmö that caused only minor damage and was barely reported in the media has been claimed by terror group Isis.

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Here's where it could snow in central Sweden this weekend
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
7 reasons you should join Sweden's 'a-kassa'
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
People-watching: October 12th
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available