Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt

Crisis Unit to be Established

The Swedish Government is to set up a special unit to help it cope in times of disaster, three years after the Tsunami disaster when calls for some kind of central crisis management unit were first made.

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt made the announcement Thursday following an investigation by the former head of the Swedish Rescue Services Agency, Christina Salomensen, who will also become the head of the new unit.

But Salomonsen says the National Crisis Management Co-ordination Centre will not have operational responsibilities, and will not be the ones making the calls ordering rescue planes in an emergency, saying that is still the task of the various ministries and government organisations.

But the unit will give advice and training to the government and make sure it can cope with disasters such as the South East Asian Tsunami when hundreds of holidaying Swedes were killed, and the government was heavily criticized for its handling of the crisis.

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