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S wants to see tougher measures against Russian influence in the EU

Published on 2024-06-02 12.35

SPD defense policy spokesman Peter Hultqvist.  Archive photo.

In order to curb Russian attempts to influence the EU Parliament, the Social Democrats want members suspected of committing security-related crimes to be suspended from office.

It is clear that Russia is trying to influence the European Union Parliament and the upcoming elections, according to SPD defense policy spokesman Peter Hultqvist. This happens, among other things, through establishing relationships with politicians, active work in social media and mixed threats.

When it comes to foreign interference and disinformation, Russia is by far the biggest actor when it comes to the European Union, Hultqvist says during a press conference on Sunday.

To protect the EU Parliament from Russian influence, the Social Democrats propose five measures. Among other things, they want parliamentarians investigated for crimes linked to European security to be suspended during the investigation.

– There are examples of politicians in the European Parliament following up on Russian affairs, as Peter Hultqvist said.

The S also wants to prevent third countries from paying travel costs for parliamentarians and civil servants, as well as introduce mandatory training to increase knowledge about corruption and foreign interference.

Hultqvist warned of the risk that both members and civil servants could become “useful idiots” for Russian interests.

– The networks used by Russia in the European Parliament must be fought and dismantled in various ways.