Countering Violent Extremism in Sweden

photo 2Six Swedish law enforcement professionals and Jennie Gren of the US Embassy in Stockholm participated in a three-day crash course on combatting violent extremism. They were lectured on the historical context and evolving organization of organized crime in the United States. Participants also examined how American law enforcement officials at the local, state and federal levels fight these ever-changing threats.

Though Sweden has enjoyed high economic performance over the past decade, the country's loose immigration policies have allowed for the emergence of a sizable extremist population. A large portion of these refugees come from war-torn nations like Libya, Syria and Iraq. Many of the participants noted that this demographic shift in Sweden will be one of the biggest challenges Sweden faces in the twenty-first century. While visiting the program sites and conversing with the speakers it became abundantly clear the problems facing Swedish and American law enforcement are very similar. Both face shifting demographics, emerging extremist groups with a propensity for organized violence, and the constant threat of larger, globalized terror attacks. Our participants benefitted from not only the site visits, but also learning about how law enforcement fits into the larger framework of our judicial system.

The group left with several theoretical and practical strategies and tactics to combat their emerging extremist population. For more details on department meetings in the U.S. and participant reactions, refer to Meridian's blog The Lead.



Project summary

Countering Violent Extremism in Sweden | June 2014
Number of Visitors: 6
Regions: Europe and Eurasia
Countries: Sweden
Impact Areas: Security and Defense
Program Areas: Global Leadership
Partners: Diplomatic Corps