(JTA) – Dozens of Swedish Jews said they would skip a Holocaust commemoration event in the southern city of Gothernburg due to the involvement of a nationalist party in organizing it. The Göteborgs-Posten daily on Wednesday published a full-page ad by some 40 Jews, of which only two were identified by name, about the involvement of the local branch of the Sweden Democrats party in the event scheduled for Jan. 27, International Holocaust Remembrance Day. “That the Sweden Democrats, with their ties to both old and new Nazism and xenophobia, are invited to co-organize the memorial ceremony is more than an affront. It is extremely offensive to us as Jews and our history,” wrote cosignatories Lisa Granér, Erik Nilsson and others whose names were not published, citing security fears.
In October, a Sweden Democrats lawmaker called for action against what she called the “control of media by any family or ethnic group.” Anna Hagwall named in an interview specifically the Bonnier Group, a privately held Swedish media group controlled by the Bonnier family, which has Jewish roots. The Swedish media also published a recording in October of Sweden Democrats finance spokesman Oscar Sjöstedt jokingly comparing Jews to sheep being killed in German abattoirs.
Sweden Democrats more than doubled its gains in the 2014 parliamentary elections, which left the party with 49 seats out of 349 in the Riksdag, the kingdom’s parliament.