A mosque located not far from Stockholm was vandalised with Neo-Nazi emblems and a sacrilegious message ‘kill Muslims’ (Photo: TT)
A mosque located not far from the capital of Sweden, Stockholm, was vandalised with Neo-Nazi emblems and a sacrilegious message ‘kill Muslims’ scrawled near the entrance of the mosque “on all three walls” according to police spokesman Sven-Erik Olsson’s statement.
“This is not something one would expect… It’s hard to understand what is going on in society, both internationally and in our own country. I don’t recognise Sweden anymore,” Mustafa Tumturk, a representative of Stockholm’s Muslim community and one of the founders of the mosque in 1985, told Swedish news agency, TT.
Rouzbeh Djalaie producer of Sveriges Radio took to twitter to say, “This morning the mosque in Bredäng was attacked. Someone threw firecrackers and painted swastikas and racist expressions”. The fireworks had reportedly been set off after morning prayers. All of the worshippers, aside from one, had left the mosque by this time. Although he was not physically injured by the incident, he was left feeling uneasy.
The Swedish Minister for Culture and Democracy, Alice Bah Kuhnke, said, “Everyone in Sweden has the right to practise their religion. Those who try to hinder and launch attacks have no place in Sweden.”
The Neo-Nazi supporting perpetrators still remain unidentified to the Swedish police since the start of the investigation. “As the Government, we will try our best to find the perpetrators of this attack” stated the Swedish minister in response to the recent attack.
Sweden’s democratic party, which is said to have Neo-Nazi roots, has now become one of the most popular parties across the country holding anti-immigrant views. However, with the Swedish Government welcoming refugees into the country, 245,000 in 2014 and 2015, there has been a surge of attacks against mosques and refugee centres.
In October police suspected arson was behind a fire which damaged a Muslim prayer room in Malmo, southern Sweden. An investigation by the Islamic Cooperation Council in Sweden last year revealed seven out of 10 mosques in the country had been attacked.
Hate crimes with xenophobic/racist motives made up the largest proportion of hate crimes in Sweden with 558 hate crime reports with an Islamophobic motive in 2015 (8%).
The Government released a National Plan against racism and hate crimes in November 2016. The Government said that Sweden “will be a country free of racism and hate crimes”. They will aim to use the plan as a “tool to prevent and combat racism and polarization in society and create conditions for an equitable and cohesive Sweden”.