Greta Thunberg charged for disobeying police order after blocking oil tankers in Sweden

Police officers talk to the Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg in Malmo, Sweden, 19 June 2023.
Police officers talk to the Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg in Malmo, Sweden, 19 June 2023. Copyright Johan Nilsson/TT News Agency via AP, File
By Euronews Green with APTN
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The Swedish climate activist has been charged with disobeying law enforcement.


Swedish prosecutors have charged Greta Thunberg with disobedience to law enforcement in connection with a climate protest in Malmö last month.

The activist was detained with others after they stopped traffic in the oil terminal of the port in Malmö on 19 June, local newspaper Sydsvenskan reports.

A short statement by Swedish prosecutors on Wednesday said a “young woman” was charged with disobedience because she "refused to comply with police orders to leave the scene” during the protest

The statement didn't identify the woman, but Swedish Prosecution Authority spokeswoman Annika Collin confirmed that it was Greta.

What punishment could Greta face?

Sydsvenskan said the 20-year-old Swedish activist will be called to trial at the end of July. Prosecutor Charlotte Ottosen told the paper that the crime of disobedience is typically punishable with fines.

Greta's media team didn't immediately answer a request for comment.

Greta Thunberg inspired a global youth movement demanding stronger efforts to fight climate change after staging weekly protests outside the Swedish Parliament starting in 2018.

What happened in Malmö?

Starting on June 15, climate activists staged a multi-day protest at Malmö's port.

Led by youth group Ta tillbaka framtiden (Take Back the Future), protestors physically blocked oil tankers in the harbour.

"The climate crisis is already a matter of life and death for countless people," Greta tweeted during the protest. "We choose to not be bystanders, and instead physically stop the fossil fuel infrastructure. We are reclaiming the future."

When the protestors were ordered to move to allow vehicles to pass, Greta was among those who refused. She was then dragged away by police.

Earlier in the year, the climate activist was briefly detained by police in Oslo during a protest against wind farms built on Indigenous land in Norway.

She was also detained during protests against the demolition of the coal village of Luetzerath in Germany in January.

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