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Armed guards at Sweden's nuclear power stations next month

STOCKHOLM (AP) — A spokesman for one of Sweden's three nuclear power plants says they will have armed guards outside the facilities starting next month in a decision made by the country's nuclear watchdog.

Anders Osterberg of the Oskarshamn power station says "the elevated level" was based on a general security assessment, not a specific threat.

Osterberg said Thursday in an email to The Associated Press that the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority decided last year that guards should carry firearms as of Feb. 1. There was no immediate word from the authority.

Sweden has a total of 10 reactors in Oskarshamn, Ringhals and Forsmark, providing about half of the country's electricity production. Sitting some 200 kilometers (124 miles) south of Stockholm on the Baltic Sea coast, Oskarshamn has three reactors.