Just days after President Donald Trump was mocked by the mainstream media and Twitter users for referring to growing tensions in Sweden, an unruly mob of rioters carried out a violent demonstration in a predominantly immigrant suburb of Stockholm.
On Monday night, a crowd gathered in Rinkeby as a police officer attempted to arrest a suspect, authorities revealed in a statement. Some members of the crowd began throwing stones at police, which is when things began to get out of hand.
“There was stone throwing and they were placed in a situation where a number of people jointly attacked and threw stones. They felt vulnerable and threatened,” said a spokeswoman for the Stockholm police.
The cops began firing warning shots, including one aimed at a rioter. The incident only emboldened rioters to strike again later in the evening – several black-clad figures could be seen hurling firebombs at passing cars and damaging shopfronts, with some instances of looting and car torching reported as well.
Although authorities claimed that they got the situation under control by around midnight and have launched an investigation into the matter, the Swedish government has faced renewed criticism for its perceived role in covering up migrant crimes.
On Saturday, Trump said: “Sweden, who would believe this? Sweden. They took in large numbers. They’re having problems like they never thought possible.”
In response, Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven said: “I was, like many others I believe, surprised by the comments made about Sweden this weekend. We have opportunities, we have challenges, we’re working (on) them every day. But I think also we must all take responsibility for using facts correctly, and for verifying any information that we spread.”
Now, the Swedish government has found itself in the unenviable position of trying to prove Trump wrong by pointing out that Monday’s riots were not unusual, as a similar destructive rampage took place back in 2013.