Swedish PM voices anger after dozens of cars are burned

About 80 vehicles were set alight in Gothenburg, Trollhattan and Malmo in what appeared to be ‘organised vandalism’.


Burned cars parked at Frolunda Square in Gothenburg (AP)
Burned cars parked at Frolunda Square in Gothenburg (AP)

Masked youths have torched dozens of cars in Sweden and thrown rocks at police, prompting an angry response from the prime minister.

Stefan Lofven said there had been an “extremely organised” night of vandalism, resulting in about 80 cars being set ablaze overnight, chiefly in Sweden’s second-largest city, Gothenburg, and nearby Trollhattan, an industrial city.

Fires were also reported on a smaller scale in Malmo, Sweden’s third-largest city.

In Trollhattan, north-east of Gothenburg, where at least six cars were burned, rocks were also thrown at police and roads were blocked. Gothenburg is 250 miles south-west of Stockholm.

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The prime minister of Sweden said the vandalism had been organised (AP)

Police spokesman Hans Lippens said that because the fires started within a short period of time, “we cannot exclude that there is a connection between the blazes”.

Photos posted by Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet showed black-clad men torching cars on a parking lot outside a Gothenburg suburb.

Sweden’s news agency TT said witnesses had seen “masked youngsters” running away. No arrests have been made.

Mr Lofven lashed out at the perpetrators, asking them: “What the heck are you doing?”

In an interview on Swedish radio, he said he was “really getting mad” and that “the society must react in a tough manner”.

He said the fires seemed to be “extremely organised”.

No injuries have been reported. However, the fires have tied up police and rescue officials and alarmed residents.

“You damage residential areas and ruin it for your neighbours,” Mr Lofven said.

Press Association

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