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Wallström wants to reintroduce conscription

Published söndag 10 januari 2016 kl 14.46
"A modern, gender-equal version of conscription"
(1:24 min)
Sweden's foreign minister, Margot Wallström, at the annual Folk och Försvar conference in Sälen. Photo: Henrik Montgomery / TT
Sweden's foreign minister, Margot Wallström, at the annual Folk och Försvar conference in Sälen. Photo: Henrik Montgomery / TT

Sweden's foreign minister Margot Wallström floated the idea of reinstituting a compulsory national service, while speaking at the annual Society and Defense conference in Sälen on Sunday.

Wallström emphasized that it was her own personal opinion that Sweden needs a "modern" compulsory national service that would apply to both men and women, reports news agency TT. The government has started an inquiry into how the armed forces can solve their personnel needs in the future.

"It should be gender equal and include both a military and a civil part," Wallström said, adding that people could choose which section they want to serve in.

The service, she said, could be of help when it comes to natural disasters, environmental clean-up efforts, searching for missing persons, helping the Migration Agency, or welcoming new arrivals to Sweden.

In 2010, Parliament voted to scrap mandatory conscription, but a recent poll commissioned of Ipsos by Dagens Nyheter, revealed that a clear majority of Swedes - over 70 percent of those asked - want it reintroduced.

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