Sweden’s Ministry of Culture announced a former diplomat as the new chair of Sweden’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission on Tuesday.
“I’m happy to appoint Anders Lidén as the new chairman of the Truth Commission,” Culture Minister Parisa Liljestrand said.
“The government remains committed to reviewing policies affecting the Sami people, while also documenting instances of abuse, violations, and racism they have endured.”
Government announcement of new appointee:
Kulturdepartementet har utsett en ny ordförande för Sanningskommissionen för det samiska folket. Anders Lidén, filosofie doktor i statsvetenskap och tidigare ambassadör, påbörjar sitt uppdrag 1 september. https://t.co/cQHSDZhs42
— Kulturdepartementet (@KulturdepSv) August 22, 2023
Lidén succeeds Kerstin Calissendorff, who stepped down in July.
Calissendorff told Radio Sweden’s Sami service at that time that the workload of the commission required four to five times more work than was planned when she agreed to the position, which necessitated her resigning early.
Anders Lidén is a former ambassador whose past postings include Helsinki, Harare, Tel Aviv, and Sweden’s permanent representation at the United Nations in New York.
Håkan Jonsson, chairman of the Sami Parliament in Sweden, said he’s pleased with the announcement.
“We welcome Anders Lidén as the new chairman of the Truth Commission,” he said.
Marie Persson Njajta, convener of the Sami Parliament’s steering group for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, said the group thanked Calissendorff for her contributions to the process and was looking forward to carrying on the inquiry.
“It’s gratifying that a new chairman has quickly arrived and can continue to lead the Truth Commission’s important work,” she said.
Truth and Reconciliation in Sweden
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Sweden began their work in spring 2022. The goal of the commission is to examine and review Sweden’s policies towards the Sami and their ongoing impacts in the present day.
It will also propose actions that promote reconciliation.
Lidén’s new posting will start on September 1.
The final report is expected by December 2025.
Write to Eilís Quinn at eilis.quinn(at)cbc.ca
Related stories from around the North:
Finland: Sami Parliament in Finland agrees more time needed for Truth and Reconciliation Commission preparation, Eye on the Arctic
Greenland: Danish PM apologizes to Greenlanders taken to Denmark as children in 1950s, Eye on the Arctic
Norway: Can cross-border cooperation help decolonize Sami-language education, Eye on the Arctic
Sweden: Sami in Sweden start work on structure of Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Eye on the Arctic
United States: Alaska reckons with missing data on murdered Indigenous women, Alaska Public Media