Kim Fredriksson in front of Eskiltuna's City Hall.
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Kim Fredriksson, group leader for the Sweden Democrats in Eskiltuna, standing in front of City Hall. Credit: Nathalie Rothschild / Radio Sweden
Mona Kanaan standing next to a bronze statue called "Who is your mother?" in Fröslunda.
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Mona Kanaan, deputy mayor of Eskilstuna, standing next to the statue "Who is your mother?" in Fröslunda. Credit: Nathalie Rothschild / Radio Sweden
Elderly woman in a suburb of Eskilstuna.
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Gunilla Rolfsdotter has lived in Skiftinge for 44 years and says she will never leave. Credit: Nathalie Rothschild / Radio Sweden

Sweden Democrats make inroads into Social Democrat heartland

7:28 min

Eskilstuna's left-right coalition has held on to power after the election, but the Sweden Democrats are the second biggest party in this post-industrial town.

In Eskilstuna, an hour's train-ride inland from Stockholm, the Social Democrats have been the biggest party since 1970.

But the Sweden Democrats have grown here and are now second biggest. They got around 19 percent in Sunday's local election, and one of their main campaign vows was to fight crime in areas classified by Swedish police as "particularly vulnerable".

One of those areas is Fröslunda, where a statue of a refugee woman recently stirred debate.

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