Sweden Democrats launch plan to bring asylum migration ‘close to zero’

The populist Sweden Democrats on Wednesday announced a plan to bring immigration to Sweden down to the lowest level in Europe.

Sweden Democrats launch plan to bring asylum migration 'close to zero'
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson. The screen next to him reads "lowest immigration in Europe". Photo: Christine Olsson / TT

“This should mean close to zero asylum immigration,” the party’s leader Jimmie Åkesson said, after announcing that a study carried out by the party had found that Swedish law was currently above the most restrictive levels allowed by the EU in several areas. 

“There is not a single rule where Sweden is not today more generous than what the legislation requires,” the party’s migration spokesperson Ludvig Aspling said. “In other words, there has never been an honest ambition to reach the EU’s minimum level.”

He said that the 30 demands he had made, titled “Sweden’s future migration policy“, had been agreed in advance with the Moderate and Christian Democrat parties. “I’m assuming that the Liberals will support this too,” he said. 

In the party’s new immigration package, it calls for changes in the rules over who has the right to claim asylum in Sweden, to change how the asylum process takes place, change asylum reception and the level of benefits asylum seekers receive, and also change the rules on family reunion. 

In a press conference, Åkesson said that there was nothing that had affected Sweden more negatively in recent years than the country’s  “useless migration policies”

“It’s claimed that we have very low immigration today, but the truth is that Sweden continues to have a relatively high level of asylum immigration,” he said. 

Among the 30 demands, the party wants to deny asylum to those who have themselves created their cause for asylum after leaving their homeland, for example by announcing that they have had a religious conversion or entered into a homosexual relationship. 

Another demand is to remove the right for family reunion among those who previously shared a household, that asylum should be withdrawn if the reason for asylum ceases, a limit to one year’s residency for relatives of asylum seekers, and a determination to reduce benefits to asylum seekers to the minimum possible level.  

“We cannot continue to hold Sweden’s welfare system open for everyone who wants to access it,” Åkesson said. 

Member comments

  1. Every one of them should be banned from every restaurant but husmanskost. No kebabs, no Thai, no pizza. Without immigration, they’d be eating nothing but potatoes and herring.

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Sweden’s right-wing parties agree to bring back Norlén as Speaker 

The four parties backing Moderate leader Ulf Kristersson as prime minister on Sunday announced that they had agreed to keep the current Speaker, Andreas Norlén in place, when the role is put to a vote as parliament opens on Monday.

Sweden's right-wing parties agree to bring back Norlén as Speaker 

The parties won a three-seat majority over the bloc led by the incumbent Social Democrats in Sweden’s general election on September 11th, and are currently in the middle of negotiating how they will form Sweden’s next government. 

Sweden’s parliament meets at 11am for the official installation of the 349 MPs for this mandate period. The votes for the Speaker and three Deputy Speakers are the first item on the agenda, after which the parties each select their parliamentary leaders and then vote on who should chair each of the parliamentary committees. 

READ ALSO: What happens next as parliament reopens? 

In a joint press release announcing the decision, the parties also agreed that the Sweden Democrats would be given eight of the 16 chairmanships the bloc will have of parliamentary committees in the next parliament, and that MPs for all four parties would back Julia Kronlid, the Sweden Democrats’ Second Deputy Leader, as the second deputy Speaker, serving under Norlén. 

In the press release, the parties said that Norlén had over the last four years shown that he has “the necessary personal qualities and qualifications which the role requires”. 

The decision to retain Norlén, who presided over the 134 days of talks and parliamentary votes that led to the January Agreement in 2019, was praised by Social Democrat leader Magdalena Andersson. 

Norlén, she said in a statement, had “managed his responsibilities well over the past four years and been a good representative of Sweden’s Riksdag.” 

The decision to appoint Kronlid was opposed by both the Left Party and the Green Party, who said that she supported tightening abortion legislation, and did not believe in evolution.

The Green Party’s joint leader Märta Stenevi said that her party “did not have confidence in Julia Kronlid”, pointing to an interview she gave in 2014 when she said she did not believe that humans were descended from apes.

The party has proposed its finance spokesperson Janine Alm Ericson as a rival candidate. 

The Left Party said it was planning to vote for the Centre Party’s candidate for the post second deputy Speaker in the hope of blocking Kronlid as a candidate.