Swedish town to hold re-election after postal mix-up

A municipality in central Sweden must hold a second election due to ballots being delivered late in the election of September last year.

Swedish town to hold re-election after postal mix-up
Ballot papers are sorted in a polling station. Photo: Johan Nilsson / TT

In Falu municipality, votes cast by 145 people were not included in the count after the bag containing them was delivered late, as The Local reported at the time.

The votes in question were placed before the official polling day of September 9th: in Sweden, some polling stations open in the weeks leading up to election day, allowing voters to cast their ballots in advance.

But these papers arrived at the electoral office a day late and several hours after counting had begun, meaning that they could not be counted.

The result of the municipal election was appealed to the Swedish Election Review Board, which has now decided to call a re-election in Falu.

“I think it's frustrating because obviously it will have a much greater effect on the outcome than if it had just been decided to recount these votes,” Falun municipal councillor Joakim Storck of the Centre Party told SVT Dalarna. He said there would be more information about the board's decision on Thursday.

The new election must be held no more than three months from the decision, meaning it will be held in May at the latest.

Elections were held at the municipal, regional, and national level in September last year, with the general election producing a very close result that led to political deadlock for several months. In January, the centre-left Social Democrats struck a deal with two former opposition rivals that allowed them to continue in government with the Green Party.


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Sweden demands consular access to trial of Swedish diplomat held in Iran

Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billström called on Iran to grant the Swedish embassy access to the trial of Johan Floderus, an EU diplomate held in Iran for more than 600 days.

Sweden demands consular access to trial of Swedish diplomat held in Iran

Floderus, who works for the EU’s diplomatic service, was arrested on April 17th, 2022, at Tehran airport as he was returning to Iran from a trip with friends.

Tehran has accused the 33-year-old of conspiring with Iran’s arch-enemy Israel and of corruption on earth, one of Iran’s most serious offences which carries a maximum penalty of death.

“The important thing in this situation is to protect the interests of Johan Floderus and our top priority is to make sure that a Swedish person from the embassy is allowed to be present at the trial so we can make sure that he gets a fair trial,” Tobias Billström told reporters, as he arrived at an EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels.

Billstrom said he was in contact with the Iranian regime to understand why the Swedish charge d’affaires in Tehran was not given access to the opening of the trial, and to “make sure that he would be allowed to attend when the trial resumes”.

Floderus’ trial opened on Saturday behind closed doors.

“It is worth noting that we consider all these charges unfounded and false, and we urge the Iranian regime to release Mr Floderus so he can be reunited with his family as soon as possible,” Billström said.

EU’s top foreign policy chief Josep Borrell called Sunday for his immediate release, saying “there are absolutely no grounds for keeping Johan Floderus in detention”.

The Swede is being held in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison.

No date has been given for the resumption of his trial.