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Wanted in attack: tall, blond Swede with acne

By Associated Press
© St. Petersburg Times
published September 12, 2003

STOCKHOLM, Sweden - Police searched Thursday for a tall, stocky Swede with acne scarred skin who fatally stabbed Foreign Minister Anna Lindh in a Stockholm store.

The 46-year-old Lindh died at a hospital Thursday, a day after she was chased up an escalator and repeatedly stabbed in the stomach, chest and arm. Her attacker fled, dropping his knife and camouflage jacket.

Police said they were searching for a 6-foot Swedish man with bad skin and shoulder-length dark-blond hair. They said he was about 30, clean-shaven and wore a hooded sweater and hat. Borders and ferries were being monitored closely.

Swedish Prime Minister Goeran Persson said Sunday's referendum on adopting the euro, the common European Union currency backed by Lindh, would go ahead, though he ordered an immediate halt to campaigning.

Police do not believe the attack was politically motivated, despite the fact it came just three days before the referendum vote.

"There is nothing that indicates there was any careful planning in this," Persson said.

Police spokesman Leif Jennekvist acknowledged police were in need of clues, but ruled out the possibility the suspect might evade justice, like the attacker who killed Prime Minister Olof Palme in 1986.

Critics said Sweden's security agency, known as SAPO, should have learned more from the murder of Palme, who was shot in downtown Stockholm while walking with his wife. Like Lindh, Palme had no bodyguard.

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