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'Serious' threat against Skavsta

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10:54 CEST+02:00
Security was increased at Stockholm Skavsta airport on Tuesday after police received a ‘serious threat' from an anonymous source.

The threat was delivered to Stockholm Police on Monday afternoon, who then passed it on to colleagues at Södermanland Police, who have responsibility for Skavsta's security.

“I can confirm that an anonymous source delivered a written threat to Stockholm Police against Skavsta Airport and the work carried out there,” Johan Levin, spokesman for Södermanland Police, told The Local.

Levin said he could not say whether the threat was directed at the airport buildings or at flights.

“Immediately after the threat was brought to our knowledge we raised security levels at the airport and around the airport,” he said.

Following the threat, all cars coming into and leaving the airport were stopped, and security checks on people entering the airport and boarding planes were stepped up.

“We also took other security measures that I am not able to talk about,” Levin said.

Asked about the potential consequences of the threatened attack, Levin said that "if they had carried out an attack against the airport or an aircraft it could have caused very serious damage."

"An aircraft from Skavsta to London, for instance, carries 170 to 180 passengers, so of course a threat against that is serious. Likewise, there are lots of people in the departure hall, so an attack there would have serious consequences too."

The airport is located 100 kilometres south of Stockholm, near the city of Nyköping. It is served by budget airlines Ryanair and Wizz and charter company Fritidsresor, and has flights to around twenty cities in Europe including London, Paris, Hamburg and Rome.

The increased security measures were put into place immediately after police received the threat on Monday afternoon, and visible extra security continued until Tuesday afternoon. Non-uniformed police, in addition to Skavsta's usual police force, were still patrolling the airport on Wednesday morning.

Police, while saying that the threat was in written form, are not revealing whether it was a letter or in some other format. They have confirmed that it was written in Swedish and did not indicate a motive or identify itself as being from a particular group. Police have not yet identified the person who made threat.

“When we received the threat we considered it to be serious,” Levin said. He added that police consider their operation to have been successful.

Skavsta Airport was on Wednesday referring questions to the police. But Dot Gade Kulovuori, managing director of the airport, said the security operation had not affected flights.

“We can only confirm that there was a threat, that we took it seriously and we increased staffing levels,” she said.

“All four departures on Tuesday morning left on time,” she added.

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