Beijing’s message to Sweden and beyond – criticise us, and we’ll topple your agenda – won’t win it any hearts and minds
Two days after Sweden’s election in September, a bizarre statement appeared in English on the website of the Chinese embassy in Stockholm. A “small handful of Swedish forces, media and individuals”, it said, had made “unwarranted claims” of Chinese interference in the Swedish vote. These were “groundless accusations”, and a “malicious attack and smear against China”. The strangest thing of all: no one in Sweden had the slightest inkling what the statement referred to.