In Sweden, a Turk sentenced for “attempted financing of terrorism” of the PKK

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In Sweden, a Turk sentenced for “attempted financing of terrorism” of the PKK

Sweden on Thursday sentenced a Turk of Kurdish origin to four and a half years in prison for “attempted financing of terrorism” by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and “extortion”. An unprecedented sentence, the result of tougher Swedish anti-terrorism legislation that came into force in July 2022.

A Turk of Kurdish origin was sentenced on Thursday July 6 in Sweden to four and a half years in prison for “attempted financing of terrorism” by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and “extortion”, a first in this Scandinavian country. who is waiting for the green light from Turkey to join NATO.

The 40-year-old tried at gunpoint to force a Kurdish trader in Stockholm to pay money to the PKK, Judge Måns Wigén said in a statement. “The extortion attempt took place within the framework of a large fundraising program carried out by the PKK in Europe,” he added.

The convict was arrested in January after uttering threats and shooting a gun outside a restaurant in Stockholm.

The court says the man’s purpose was to racketeering and use the funds to finance the PKK, which is classified as a terrorist organization by Turkey but also by Sweden, the European Union and the United States.

Tougher anti-terrorism legislation

The court also sentenced him to deportation, with a ban on returning to Swedish territory once his sentence has been served.

Contacted by AFP, his lawyer Ilhan Aydin indicated that his client was going to appeal the court’s decision. “He is disappointed and we do not share the judgment of the court regarding the financing of terrorism and the attempted extortion,” he said.

This sentence is the consequence of a tightening of the Swedish anti-terrorism legislation which came into force in July 2022, which makes it possible in particular to facilitate prosecution in the event of the financing of terrorism.

It is the first time that the new law, already used in cases linked to the jihadist organization Islamic State, has been applied to a sympathizer of the PKK.

Stuck at the gates of NATO, Sweden is waiting for the green light from Turkey and Hungary to join the Alliance. Ankara criticizes Sweden for its alleged indulgence towards Kurdish militants who have taken refuge in the Scandinavian country and is demanding dozens of extraditions of militants whom the Turkish authorities describe as “terrorists”.

With AFP

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Alice Ross

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