TROLLHATTAN, SWEDEN: The southern industrial city of Trollhattan has become a focal point for underlying racial tensions in Sweden, a country known for its generous attitudes to migrants. On Thursday, a 21-year-old local man with racist motives rampaged through a school, stabbing two people to death and seriously wounding two others before being fatally shot by police. Authorities say he methodically selected dark-skinned victims at Trollhattan’s Kronan school, where most students are foreign-born. The attacker, who killed a teacher and a student, has not been named by police.
Many in this nation of 10 million were horrified by the violence but not surprised at its eruption, as the migrant surge across Europe has increased anti-immigrant attitudes. A teacher at a nearby school, Jo-Anne Frampton, said it was “just a matter of time.” Hundreds of people lit candles Friday in the yard of a Swedish school where police said a 21-year-old masked man with a sword and a knife went on a rampage a day earlier, stabbing two to death and seriously wounding two others before being shot by police. Police described the Thursday attack as a carefully organized, racist hate crime by a young man who methodically selected his victims in Trollhattan’s Kronan school, where most of the students are foreign-born.
The Scandinavian nation of 10 million, known for its welcoming attitude toward migrants, was shocked by the violence in the southern industrial town near Sweden’s second largest city, Goteborg. “This is a black day for Sweden,” Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said of the country’s deadliest school attack. “It is a tragedy that hits the entire country.” Although violent crime is relatively rare in Sweden, there has been a spate of arson attacks on asylum centers in recent weeks as an influx of refugees has surged. Immigration officials estimate some 190,000 asylum-seekers will arrive this year, second only to Germany in Western Europe. — AP