He established a ‘Psychological Defense Agency’ against propaganda from Sweden, Russia, China and Iran. The new agency was tasked with countering disinformation and increasing the population’s resistance to possible operations.
Swedenhas established a new agency to defend the country against disinformation, propaganda and psychological warfare. The official opening of the Swedish Psychological Defense Agency came just on the day Finnish President Sauli Niinistö accused Russiaof “challenging the sovereignty of Sweden and Finland” and called on NATO to take office.
The agency’s 45employees will work with both the Swedish Armed Forces and civil society elements such as the media, universities and the central government to strengthen the country’s psychological defenses.
FIRST BIG TASK GENERAL ELECTIONS
Swedish Interior Minister Mikael Damberg said the agency’s first major task would be to protect the Swedish general election from influence campaigns, addingthat “in 2022, the agency has a very important task, which will be to strengthen its ability to detect and address misinformation against Sweden in connection with the general elections.”
3 COUNTRIES TARGETED: RUSSIA CHINA AND Iran
Henrik Landerholm, former Vice Rector of the Swedish Defense University, who was appointed head of the agency, named Russia, China and Iran as the three countries known to have organized disinformation campaigns against Sweden, adding that their aim was to divide society.
“We have all seen the results of the Russian campaign before the U.S. election, many of which are aimed at destabilizing or undermining trust in state institutions,” Landerholm said in an interview.
10 PERCENT OF THE POPULATION FOLLOWS SPUTNİK
Meanwhile, a study by the Swedish Civil Emergency Agency found that 10 percent of Swedes follow Russia’s international propaganda agency Sputnik News.