Last Updated: Friday, 08 December 2017, 11:58 GMT

Amnesty International Report 2016/17 - Sweden

Publisher Amnesty International
Publication Date 22 February 2017
Cite as Amnesty International, Amnesty International Report 2016/17 - Sweden, 22 February 2017, available at: [accessed 11 December 2017]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Kingdom of Sweden
Head of state: King Carl XVI Gustaf
Head of government: Stefan Löfven

New restrictions on residence permits and family reunification for refugees and others granted protection came into force. Roma and Sami peoples faced ongoing discrimination. A parliamentary committee published recommendations to reform inadequate laws on rape.


In June, Parliament passed a temporary law affecting people entitled to international protection that would apply for three years after coming into force in July. The law limits the length of the residence permits given to persons granted protection, from permanent residence permits to temporary permits of three years for persons granted refugee status and of 13 months for persons granted subsidiary protection. The law also withdrew the possibility of family reunification for those granted subsidiary protection.


Two UN Committees expressed serious concerns about Sweden's treatment of Roma citizens of other European countries. In April, the UN Human Rights Committee called on Sweden to ensure that Roma had equal access to opportunities and services, citing concerns about their limited access to education, employment, housing and health care. In July, the UN ICESCR Committee raised similar concerns, including the resulting vulnerability to forced eviction of many Roma living in informal settlements. Romani people remained at risk of hate crimes based on their ethnicity.

In July, the District Court of Stockholm found that the Skåne police database of nearly 5,000 Swedish-Roma people constituted ethnic discrimination and breached Swedish law. The Court awarded compensation to the complainants for the harm suffered; an appeal by the state was pending at the end of the year.

The UN Human Rights Committee and the ICESCR Committee, in April and July respectively, raised continuing concerns about the ability of Sami people to enjoy the rights of Indigenous Peoples, notably their land rights.


In April, the government announced a scheme to provide financial compensation to transgender people who had been required to undergo forced sterilization to legally change their gender.


In October, the 2014 Sexual Offences Committee inquiry into sexual offences presented its proposals to the government. They included the introduction of a consent-based definition of rape, and liability for negligence for sexual offences.[1]


The Inspectorate of Strategic Products (ISP) – the national authority charged with the control and compliance of defence material and dual-use products – cleared the sale by the Saab Group of the advanced air radar system GlobalEye to the United Arab Emirates. Concerns raised by journalists alleging a lack of due diligence prior to the 2010 sale of the Saab 2000 airborne early warning and Erieye control system to Saudi Arabia, were left unanswered as the ISP's records remained classified. Concerns remained regarding the possible use of these technologies by the Saudi Arabia-led coalition in the conflict in Yemen to commit or facilitate serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law.

1. Sweden: Submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (EUR 42/3305/2016)

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