More Swedish Peacekeeping Forces Abroad

The new Swedish government wants to send more troops to international peacekeeping operations.

But, Defence Minister Mikael Odenberg says there are no plans for Swedish forces to serve in Iraq.

Odenberg was in Copenhagen Friday to meet his Danish counterpart Sören Gade. Denmark has 460 troops in southern Iraq. But Odenberg said Sweden never supported the American-led war against Saddam Hussein, and it is a political decision to not send troops there.

There are 350 Swedish soldiers serving with the NATO forces in Afghanistan, although Sweden is not a member of the Western military alliance. Foreign Minister Carl Bildt says the number of Swedish troops engaged in international missions should be closer to 2000, the number reached in the 1990’s, instead of the around 800 deployed today.

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