Terrorist threat level to remain high
Published 7 January 2024
Charlotte von Essen, Head of the Swedish Security Service, has decided that the terrorist threat level is to remain high – four on a five-level scale. Developments in Sweden and worldwide affect both violent extremists and foreign powers’ security-threatening activities.
“The picture that has been painted of Sweden as an Islamophobic country has strongly contributed to the increased terrorist threat from violent Islamism. Sweden continues to be considered a prioritised target. The threat is posed by both lone actors and groups that can be directed by actors abroad”, says Charlotte von Essen, Head of the Swedish Security Service.
An overall situational assessment, backed by a new one-year assessment by the National Centre for Terrorist Threat Assessment (NCT) and the Swedish Security Service's counter-terrorism work, etc. provides the basis for the renewed decision on the terrorist threat level.
Alongside the threat from violent Islamist extremism, there is a lingering attack threat from violent right-wing extremism, as well as from individuals who are acting based on a mixed, hodge-podge ideology that includes anti-state sentiments.
“A high terrorist threat, together with the status in general, means that the security situation in Sweden is serious. It will likely remain this way for quite some time. The threats are complex; they overlap and thus grow stronger. The rapidly unfolding events are difficult to predict, but often have a direct impact on the threat to Sweden”, says Charlotte von Essen.
Both violent extremists and foreign powers may attempt to exploit and influence developments in a direction that is negative for Sweden in order to achieve their own goals and purposes.
“Sweden must not be used as a platform for security-threatening activities, neither by violent extremists nor foreign powers. We must work together to make Sweden a less attractive country to operate in”, says Charlotte von Essen.
7 January 2024