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Police to probe shamed Sweden Democrats

17 Nov 2012, 16:00

Published: 17 Nov 2012 16:00 GMT+01:00

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The video of the men's drunken tirade on a 2010 summer night in Stockholm was published, bit by bit, by the Expressen newspaper this week, triggering a crisis within the Sweden Democrat Party.

The police launched the inquiry on its own initiative after having seen the film clips.

"When crimes come to our attention our task is to try and investigate them as much as possible," Stockholm police spokesman Lars Byström told Sveriges Television (SVT).

The video clips show leading party members Erik Almqvist, Kent Ekeroth and Christian Westling harassing a drunk man, calling a young woman a "whore" and hurling racist abuse at Soran Ismail, a stand-up comedian.

Kent Ekeroth is also seen pushing a woman into the side of a car and, at one point, all three men wield aluminium pipes which they pick up from a construction site on the street.

Almqvist and Westling have stepped down from their political posts, while Ekeroth has taken a "timeout" from politics. The party's youth wing has spoken out against the top leadership.

In an open letter to the members, Sweden Democrat party secretary Björn Söder wrote that the past few days may be the Sweden Democrats' "biggest challenge ever as a political party."

He asked members to stand united and wrote that it is "unfortunate" that the youth wing has openly criticized the party's crisis management.

"What we need now is not a split but to support each other and to show unity in this incredibly difficult period," wrote Söder.

Overall support for the Sweden Democrats and party leader Jimmie Åkesson has weakened in the wake of the scandal.

In a poll by the Novus Group, 40 per cent of 1,000 respondents said that their faith in the party has weakened, while 33 per cent said that their faith in Åkesson has weakened, too.

However, among Sweden Democrat voters, 64 per cent still support Åkesson and 24 per cent said they now have more faith in the Sweden Democrats and its leader.

The Sweden Democrats have demanded to see an uncut and unedited version of the film leaked by Expressen, but the newspaper's editor-in-chief, Thomas Mattsson, called this an "unrealistic demand". He said his paper will not comply.

Story continues below…

Mattson told the Resume magazine that the party's demand "presumably reveals that the Sweden Democrats think it is more problematic that Expressen, day after day, reveals more new scandals than there are members of parliament - like Ekeroth and Almqvist - that are stilling being backed by the party?"

While a preliminary police investigation into the three politicians' conduct has been launched, no one is at this point officially suspected of any crime.

The Local/nr

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Your comments about this article

18:57 November 17, 2012 by Eric1
The Swedish press is obsessed with destroying a political party they disagree with. A corrupt press is a bigger threat to a democracy than muslim terrorist.
20:20 November 17, 2012 by cowboykodp
@Eric1 and other SD scum..... GIVE IT A REST ALREADY. You and your swine buddies have been exposed for who they have been all along. A piece of s÷"t in a suit is still a piece of s":t

That little ba"+?rd kent Ekroth is the brains behind this entire SD episode. His propaganda and lies all have to do with protecting his Jewish mother from his perceived and made up threats from the Muslim immigrants.

I love it.
20:52 November 17, 2012 by Spuds MacKenzie
This is INSANE! The cops are investigating people because they said some "offensive" words?! They need to be spending their time arresting all the muslims who are raping Swedish girls, vandalizing buildings, setting arson fires, etc.!

SD will never die, despite the Swedish media's unending attempts to kill it. There are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, here who will fight to the bitter end to keep Sweden Swedish!
23:45 November 17, 2012 by cowboykodp
@ #3 and #4:

See first paragraph of #2.

@ #3: Do you really want to go there? Cause let me tell you 100% of immigrants and according to your butt buddy #4, 89% of Swedes will gladly "fight" your kind to the "bitter end".

Bring it on chicken hawk.
11:25 November 18, 2012 by calebian22

Think what you want about these three politicians and SD as a whole, but don't think for one second that your hatred of SD means that Jews are not under threat in Sweden. Even the Local has reported on Reepalu's misteps in Malmö protecting them from "unknown" groups. The shrinking number of Jews in Sweden is the canary in the coal mine.

By the way, I remember your assertions about SD and the majority of Swedes fighting to the bitter end when they were under the 4 percent mark. Funny how the percentage keeps growing in their favor. Must be all the undercover bigots finally showing their true stripes. That must be it. Right?

I also remember you being alot more reasonable. Times change apparently.
12:24 November 18, 2012 by Iraniboy
11% support was before this scandal. It happened over a month after Åkesson expressed zero tolerance over racism in their party. This basically means we have 4-5% who support SD no matter what and 5% who support a SD without racism however the rest of 90% do not accept them in any form.

The main obstacle for SD is not those who do not accept SD. It is those vast majority of Swedes (maybe less than 80%) who actually fight to dissolve SD. These Swedes see SD as a danger to decades of Swedish reputation. These Swedes do not want to be represented or associated anywhere or anyhow by SD since they don't consider SD's ideas and behaviors compatible with Swedish standards.

The fact is that majority of refugees in Swedes are not bothered if their cousins are not allowed to come or their parental benefits are halved by SD. They were on death row in their home countries and they didn't give up so they will not get bothered by anything not worse than death row!!! So the main rivals of SD and their supporters are Swedes themselves who don't SD as real Swedish representatives.

By the way it is funny to read the comment of non-Swedes here who have absolutely no clue about Sweden and how Swedes think.
18:45 November 18, 2012 by Swedishmyth
We'll see how much of anything in Sweden will be "compatible with Swedish standards" a generation from now.
22:33 November 18, 2012 by Thompsuleme
Lets tone down the abuses shall we? As an Immigrant myself I know its important for every party to have a say, healthy competition is good. The rulling alliance should adress Immigration issues. Their "fear" of public backlash has played into the SD hands. Sweden has a right to govern itself democratically, no news propaganda or media manipulation can save anyone or group...It is the politicians actions and society that decides, and at the moment a lot of swedes arent happy with what they see in the streets and hear from the politicians.
00:34 November 19, 2012 by Spuds MacKenzie
@Cowboy If you watch any of the Swedish TV news you'll know that this "scandal" has just given the SD's a 3% increase in the polls! 14% and growing!

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