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Several former Nazis running for office as Sweden Democrats: report

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Several former Nazis running for office as Sweden Democrats: report
File photo showing members of the National Socialist Front in Sollentuna in 2006. Photo: TT
21:09 CEST+02:00
Several former members of the violent and anti-democratic Nazi organization National Socialist Front (Nationalsocialistisk front - NSF) can be found on the election lists of the Sweden Democrats, according to an expose from the newspaper Expressen and the anti-racism group Expo.
Matching all election candidates from all political parties - over 6,000 candidates for parliament, more than 12,000 for county councils and more than 52,000 and the municipal level - against lists of Nazi activists, the groups found a number of people with deep ties to Nazism who are now running for office as Sweden Democrats. 
 
Expressen and Expo said the candidates in question weren't just peripherally involved in Nazi activities but were “deeply rooted in the Nazi environment”.
 
“In the review we are now publishing, it is not sufficient to have attended a white power concert or merely been seen at far-right and Nazi demonstrations,” the joint report read. “Instead, we have chosen to focus on candidates who were deeply rooted in the Nazi environment, including members of Nazi organizations, Nazi activists and those who actively spread propaganda.”
 
Expressen and Expo confronted six named politicians who are on the ballot as Sweden Democrats. Their reactions ranged from dismissing the report as “a witch hunt” to saying that they have now changed their views. Several of the candidates abruptly ended their interviews when confronted. 
 
One candidate, Andreas Olofsson, is running to represent the Sweden Democrats on the Skåne county council. He joined NSF in the 1990s and advanced to become a so-called local team manager within the Nazi group. He told Expresen that he was "young and dumb” at the time and now completely condemns his Nazi past. 
 
"I am a completely different person today,” Olofsson said. 
 
NSF was Sweden's largest neo-Nazi political party before disbanding in 2008. NSF candidates received just 0.3 percent of the overall vote in the 2006 parliamentary election. 
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