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Forty Years Ago, A Swedish Bank Robber Gave Us "Stockholm Syndrome"

Exactly 40 years after a hostage situation in a Stockholm bank, the now 72-year-old ex-convict recalls the bond formed with his captives. The psychiatrist who coined the term helps explain.

Jan Erik Olsson escorted from the bank after his surrender on Aug. 28 1973
Jan Erik Olsson escorted from the bank after his surrender on Aug. 28 1973
Monica Perosino and Francesco Semprini

STOCKHOLM - Forty years ago in a Stockholm bank, a psychiatric phenomenon was born.

It is one of the most emblematic syndromes in psychiatry literature, and if there is anyone in the world who knows exactly how the Stockholm syndrome works, it is the man himself: Jan Erik Olsson. “I remember every detail, every single instant, every word,” says Olsson, speaking four decades later from the Swedish capital. “But I still can’t explain how it could have happened.”

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Severodonetsk

Cameron Manley and Emma Albright

After weeks of raging battles, it appears Severodonetsk is set to fall under full control of Russian forces. The governor of the Luhansk region, Serhiy Haidai wrote on Telegram that Ukrainian forces will have to withdraw from the strategic city in southeastern Ukraine.

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The decision to retreat was made in order to save Ukrainian soldiers: “Nobody abandons our guys, nobody allows the encirclement (of our troops). The situation right now is as such that staying at these destroyed positions just for the sake of being there doesn't make sense,” Haidai said. At least 90% of the city's infrastructure has been destroyed.

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