Asian separatist leaders in Sweden

The terror bombing in Bali may have political repercussions for Sweden. Several leaders of separatist organisations from South East Asia, who fight against democratically elected governments in Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand, live in Sweden.
Up to now without much questions asked about their doings there.
One of them is Mr. Hasan di Tiro, the leader of the Free Aceh movement (GAM). He lives in a Stockholm suburb.
ScandAsia contacted Mr. Sven-Olof Petersson, counsellor at the Foreign Ministry in Stockholm, for an explanation of Sweden’s position regarding Mr. di Tiro. Our question was:
Indonesia has several times, for example in August 2002, demanded that Sweden cease to give asyslum to Mr. di Tiro and some other GAM-members living in Sweden. What is Sweden’s reply to these demands?
“Hasan di Tiro is a Swedish citizen!” Mr. Petersson replied.
Another affected country is the Philippines. Yesterday Mr. Blas F. Ople, the Foreign Minister of the Philippines, met with his counterpart Ms. Anna Lindh in Sweden. His tasks on the trip is to gain EU support for a European ban of the CPP, Philippines communist party, whose leader Jose Maria Sison lives in Holland.
ScandAsia has not yet any details of the meeting but the issue of banning CPP in Europe was discussed in Sweden’s parliament yesterday.
Ms. Alice Åström, who represents the Swedish communist party V, asked Anna Lindh how Sweden would respond to the new demands.
“The organisations that Alice Åström bring up here have been guilty to a number of political killings and admitted that they have murdered senators, mayors and praliamentarians. The latest murders took place this year so this is not any old event but rather something happening now and is a current issue. Therefore I see no reason to act in favour of that kind of organisations. We will defend organisations that respect human rights and fight with democratic means,” responded Anna Lindh who also referred to the Bali bombing in the debate.
Among the many groups that have a refuge in Sweden are also members of the Thai-Malaysian separatist movement Pulo. They are reportedly residing in Southern Sweden.

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