Swedes in sauna row spark police action (only in Sweden?)

You can take our sauna, but you can never take our freedom.

Swedes in sauna row spark police action (only in Sweden?)
Not the sauna-bathers in the article. Photo: Dan Hansson/SvD/TT

Swedes love saunas. But few love it more than two Gotlanders who had to be escorted out by police after they sat down in the sauna in a Visby swimming centre and simply refused to give up their seats.

The men insisted on their right to sweat it out in the sauna when a staff member asked them to leave because the centre was closing for the evening on Tuesday. At around 6.30pm police were called.

“Two elderly gentlemen in their 70s who did not want to leave,” Visby police station chief Thomas Rasch told regional newspaper Hela Gotland.

In another twist to the tale, one of the officers was Sweden's national police chief Dan Eliasson. He happened to be on the island for a police conference and decided to join the police officers on duty.

Twenty minutes after the call-out Eliasson and his colleagues had convinced the sauna-bathers to leave.

“It's part of the job. Sometimes you do strange things as a police officer,” noted Rasch.

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