Sweden: thousands of people demonstrate against the vaccine pass (photos)

Thousands of people demonstrated peacefully on Saturday in the two largest cities in Sweden, against the vaccination pass.



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EAbout 9,000 people, according to Swedish media, marched through the streets of Stockholm chanting “No to vaccination passes, yes to freedom”, at the call of a group called “the Freedom Movement”.



In Gothenburg, Sweden’s second city, another demonstration gathered around 1,500 people, media also reported.

“We must be able to decide for ourselves what we want to do with our own body,” a protester, Julia Johansson, 30, told AFP in Stockholm, who considers that these vaccine passes “discriminate against a lot of people”.

“We may say that (vaccination) is not an obligation, it is if we lose rights in society because of it”, also denounced Aida Begovic, 35, opposed to a system which “forces people to undergo medical procedures they don’t want. »

The Scandinavian country, which is battling an unprecedented wave of infections with around 40,000 cases reported per day for a week, introduced the vaccination pass on December 1. Since December 12, it has been mandatory for indoor events with more than 50 people.

Some protesters wore the markings of extremist groups like the neo-Nazi group NMR and had covered their faces to avoid identification.

A number of vaccination centers in the city had closed early Saturday as a precaution.

Over 83% of Swedes over the age of 12 are fully immunized.

Faced with the pandemic, Sweden, unlike many countries, has not confined the population or closed schools, preferring to recommend social distancing, working from home and the – only limited – use of masks.

It did, however, ban visits to care homes for the elderly, restrict public gatherings and the opening hours of bars and restaurants.

The number of deaths in Sweden – around 15,600 out of a population of 10.3 million – is around the European average but is significantly higher than that of neighboring countries (Norway, Finland and Denmark).

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