Swedish PM warns of ‘thousands of deaths’ but STILL refuses to lock down despite pleas by 2,300 doctors – The Sun

Swedish PM warns of ‘thousands of deaths’ but STILL refuses to lock down despite pleas by 2,300 doctors – The Sun

April 6, 2020

SWEDEN’s PM has told citizens to prepare for “thousands” of coronavirus deaths – but still refused to put the country on lockdown despite doctors’ pleas.

The liberal nation has so far shunned the tougher approaches of most of its neighbours, refusing to order pubs, restaurants and schools to close.

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The deadly bug has now taken root in the country, with 6,830 confirmed cases and 401 deaths recorded so far.

And Swedish PM Stefan Lofven has now warned his countrymen they will soon face an explosion in the death toll.

He told the Dagens Nyheter newspaper: “We will have more seriously ill people who need intensive care and we will have significantly more deaths.

“We are facing thousands of deaths. We need to prepare for that.”

Sweden has now reluctantly tightened some of its social distancing regulations after widespread criticism.


It cut the numbers of people allowed to gather from 499 to 49, and ordered bars and restaurants to offer table service only.

But despite the PM’s chilling warning, he still refused to order a full nationwide lockdown.

And he played down what critics have called the government’s “softer” approach when compared to other countries.

Lofven said: “I don’t think you ought to dramatise [the differences].

“We’re doing it in a somewhat different way. Sometimes that is because we are in different phases [of the pandemic].”

Lofven previously said a full lockdown was unnecessary as his government trusted Swedes to behave “like adults” and socially distance if they were ill.

But the relaxed measures have raised alarm in the country's medical community.

A petition signed by more than 2,300 doctors, scientists, and professors has called on the government to get tough and tighten restrictions.

Prof Cecilia Söderberg-Nauclér, a virus expert at the Karolinska Institute, said: “We’re not testing enough, we’re not tracking, we’re not isolating enough – we've let the virus loose.

“They are leading us to catastrophe.”


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However, the scientist leading Sweden's lockdown battle yesterday said Britain's lockdown goes too far.

Anders Tegnell, who studied at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, told the Mail on Sunday: "I am very sceptical of lockdowns altogether but if you ever do them, you should do them at an early stage.

"At certain times I suppose they can be useful, if you are unprepared and need more intensive care facilities, for example, but you are really just pushing the problem ahead of you."

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