Assassination Shockwaves in Sweden

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On Sunday, 28 November, it is 30 years since Sweden’s prime minister Olof Palme was assassinated in central Stockholm.

Despite Scandinavia’s economic ups and downs, an underlying sense of social wellbeing has always prevailed. This was shattered on 28 February 1986, when Sweden’s prime minister, Olof Palme, was assassinated in central Stockholm as he and his wife walked home from the cinema.

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Shock and incredulity swept across Scandinavia – increasing when the police failed to find either the murderer or his gun. Palme was a politician of international standing, with strong socialist views that he did not hesitate to express. Conspiracy theories abound, with the KGB, the CIA and the Yugoslavian UDBA variously blamed, but a satisfactory explanation for the assassination has never been found.

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Scandinavia was further stunned in 2003 when history appeared to repeat itself. The popular Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs, Anna Lindh, widely tipped to be the next prime minister, was knifed while shopping in central Stockholm, and subsequently died of her wounds. Mijailo Mijalovic was eventually convicted of her killing: he blamed “voices in his head”.

Assassination Shockwaves in Sweden, written by Tor Kjolberg

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