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Sweden admits PKK receives significant funding

February 27, 2023 at 12:42 pm

Swedish flag in Malmo, Sweden [Harry Engels/Getty Images]

A senior official in the Swedish Security Service (SAPO) confirmed on Sunday that the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, and like-minded Kurdish groups receive significant funding in Sweden.

SAPO’s deputy head of counter-terrorism, Susanna Trehorning, told a television journalist, “I will not disclose the amount, but I can say that the PKK organisation receives a large amount of funding in our country.”

She pointed out that SAPO is constantly working to identify the people involved in financing the organisation, noting that a person was arrested last week for collecting “royalties” from shops for the PKK. The organisation is designated as a terrorist group by a number of countries, including Turkiye.

Sweden’s chief NATO negotiator, Oscar Stenstrom, said on 29 January that his country has a larger share of PKK financing compared with Finland. Both countries are seeking NATO membership. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced on Friday that a tripartite meeting between Turkey, Finland and Sweden will be held in mid-March in Brussels to discuss the two bids to join the alliance.

Turkey, Sweden and Finland signed a tripartite Memorandum of Understanding on 18 June last year regarding the accession of the Scandinavian countries to NATO, after they pledged to respond to Ankara’s demands regarding cooperation in the fight against terrorism.

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