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Nationalists abandon 'warrior king' anniversary

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Nationalists abandon 'warrior king' anniversary
10:43 CET+01:00
The 30th of November used to be a day when Swedish nationalists converged in the larger cities to commemorate the death of warrior king Karl XII, traditionally a symbol for the extreme right in Sweden. However, recently it seems the anniversary has been abandoned.

”You can't always do everything you want,” Marc Abramsson, the chairman of the nationalistic party National Democrats (Nationaldemokraterna), told news agency TT.

According to Abramsson, it is a question of resources.

His party are putting all their efforts into a demonstration on December 10th with the heading ”Stop the hostility against Swedes”, where they will march side by side with the neo-Nazi Party of Swedes (Svenskarnas Parti), formerly known as the People's Front (Folkfronten) and founded by members of the former National Socialist Front (Nationalsocialistisk front – NSF).

”There are quite a few organisations behind the demonstration, and they don't all share the same ideology or the same policies,” Abramsson told TT.

Lack of resources or not, experts are saying that the celebrations on the anniversary of the death of Sweden's warrior king may be a thing of the past.

Karl XII isn't mentioned the same way in the rhetoric of nationalists today. Nowadays the focus is more on contemporary history than the past,” said Anna-Lena Lodenius, a writer who has studied the Swedish extreme right for many years, to TT.

Police in Lund, in southern Sweden, where as late as three years ago cobble-stones, bottles and torches were thrown about during violent scuffles between antifascists and police, when the nationalists celebrated Karl XII, aren't expecting any violence during this year's anniversary.

”We have no indications that there will be any demonstrations, although we are ready should there be trouble,” said Jörgen Nilsson of the Skåne police.

However, Lars Hulthén, the spokesperson of the 30 November Association (30 November föreningen), which has traditionally been behind the marches commemorating the day in Lund, told TT that candles will be lit and a wreath be laid down in honour of the ”heroic king” in the city.

Police in Stockholm aren't expecting any trouble on November 30th.

However, the December 10th demonstration is expected to generate a number of antifascist demonstrations in response to the nationalist's initiative.

All these will take place on the same day as dignitaries from across the globe will converge on Stockholm to attend this year's Nobel festivities.

Stockholm police, however, are not concerned.

”The Nobel festivities make it slightly more tricky to move people around. But we've had similar things going on on the Nobel day before, so we'll deal with it,” he told TT.

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