Violent riots continue to shake Stockholm's suburbs for the third night in a row, following a police shooting last week. Last Monday, police shot a man in the impoverished, mostly immigrant suburb of Husby, after the 69-year-old allegedly threatened the police with a machete that he was brandishing. Husby is primarily composed of immigrants from the Middle East, Turkey, and Somalia. The riots are a reaction to what was seen as "police brutality."
After the rioting in Husby, the protests spread to other suburbs around the capital of Sweden. The rioters have started fires, smashed windows of schools and businesses, torched cars (at least 100 cars were burned on Sunday night) in nine suburbs around Stockholm. The police have made eight arrests so far. The riots consist of about about 60 to 100 people, mostly younger men. The protesters have also responded violently to the police, throwing stones and kicking them.
Megafonen, the youth group responsible for organizing the protests, is demanding an independent investigation of the police as well as a public apology. Rami al-Khamisi, a law student and founder of Megafonen, said to a Swedish newspaper The Local they had been called racial slurs. He said the riots are a response to "growing marginalization and segregation in Sweden over the past 10, 20 years."
Yesterday, the Prime Minister Reinfeldt stated:
"We've had two nights with great unrest, damage, and an intimidating atmosphere in Husby and there is a risk it will continue. We have groups of young men who think that that they can and should change society with violence. Let's be clear: this is not okay. We cannot be ruled by violence."
[image via Getty]