In 2004, the Swedish channel TV4 revealed how two Egyptians had been deported from Sweden in 2001. They were brought to a CIA-plane in Stockholm under humiliating circumstances. They were later victims of torture in Egypt. The Swedish Chancellor of Justice decided in 2008 that the deportation was against the European Convention and decided that a damage of SEK 3 million was to be paid to one of the Egyptians from the Swedish authorities.
This was shortly after 9/11 and the Swedish goverment had shortly before officially aligned itself with the USA in the struggle against terrorism.
SÄPO spied on US planes
But in 2005-2006 the same Social Democratic government acted differently. This was after the invasion of Iraq and the exposure from TV4. Suddenly the government had reason to avoid more critique from the media. So the Swedish security police SÄPO sent out military intelligence in airport suits to overview an American plane which stopped in Stockholm to refuel.
They discovered an American prisoner transport and according to some information the passengers were strapped and had their heads covered with hoods. This and other planes transported prisoners to either Egypt or Jordan. Countries which are hardly known for respecting human rights.
Diplomatic crisis in 2006
The new discovery led to a diplomatic crisis between Sweden and the USA according to the report. In 30 March 2006, the highest civil servant at the US embassy in Stockholm was called to the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to answer some questions.
At the meeting the Swedish side pressured the American civil servant about the plane. The Swedish side claimed that the plane was not private but state-owned and needed more information on the destination. The Swedish side also made it clear that it did not appreciate the fact that the prisoner transport plane which landed in February had been registered as private. After the meeting, the American embassy reported back to Washington that it seemed as the Swedish government was worried after earlier exposures of CIA-planes landing in several European airports.
The 4th April in 2006, the same day as the plane was about to land in Stockholm, the Americans were informed that it was now the Swedish Armed Forces that decided in the matter and that they had to apply for a special permit from them to land. The Defence Forces in turn had a number of questions about the CIA-plane. When the Americans had answered the questions, a battery of follow-up questions came up.
The Swedish side explained that these questions were put in order to find out if the USA still used prisoner transports. Sweden tightened the rules. In order to continue with the prisoner transports, the USA had to answer a number of questions 20 days in advance. After this, the transports ceased.