• Sweden's news in English

Jews warned about visiting southern Sweden

The Local · 16 Dec 2010, 10:12

Published: 16 Dec 2010 10:12 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“We reluctantly are issuing this advisory because religious Jews and other members of the Jewish community there have been subject to anti-Semitic taunts and harassment,” said Dr. Shimon Samuels, Director of International Relations with the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Centre, in a statement.

“There have been dozens of incidents reported to the authorities but have not resulted in arrests or convictions for hate crimes.”

Samuels, along with Wiesenthal associate dean Rabbi Abraham Cooper, conveyed their concerns for the safety of the Jewish community to Swedish Minister of Justice Beatrice Ask during meetings in Stockholm on Thursday.

The statement emphasised that the travel warning had nothing to do with Saturday’s suicide bombing in Stockholm.

In issuing the warning, the Wiesenthal Centre cited "the outrageous remarks of Malmö mayor Ilmar Reepalu, who blames the Jewish community for failing to denounce Israel."

Reepalu, Malmö's long-time Social Democratic mayor, has come in for criticism over his comments regarding Jews on a number of occasions in the last year.

Speaking to the The Sunday Telegraph in February, Reepalu seemed to deny that Jews in Malmö were suffering from harassment despite police reports showing a doubling in the number of crimes against the town's Jewish residents between 2008 and 2009.

"There haven't been any attacks on Jewish people and if Jews from the city want to move to Israel, that is not a matter for Malmö," he told the newspaper.

Reepalu has also been criticised by Malmö-based Jews for allowing anti-Semitism to fester.

"He's demonstrated extreme ignorance when it comes to our problems," Fredrik Sieradzki of the Jewish Community of Malmö (Judiska Församlingen i Malmö) told The Local in January.

"More often, it's the far-left that commonly use Jews as a punching bag for their disdain toward the policies of Israel, even if Jews in Malmö have nothing to do with Israeli politics. It's shameful and regrettable that such a powerful politician could be so ignorant about the threats we face," he added.

According to the travel warning, Jews should exercise "extreme caution when visiting southern Sweden."

Story continues below…

The discussions with Ask, Cooper and Samuels invited Swedish officials to participate in a law enforcement training programme offered by the Wiesenthal Centre and urged Sweden to "strengthen the security of all Jewish institutions."

"It is unacceptable in a democracy committed to protecting its citizens, that the Swedish Jewish community is forced to pay for necessary upgraded security measures to safeguard their lives and property," said Samuels.

The Wiesenthal Centre has previously issued travel warnings for Turkey, Dubai, France, and Belgium.

Calls by The Local to Reepalu asking for comment were not returned.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

13:38 December 16, 2010 by wolverine2k
All religions coming from the desert should be denounced and then we achieve total world peace and heaven on earth.
13:45 December 16, 2010 by Mike in America
As a Jew who has visited southern Sweden several times in the past few years, I have nothing but good things to say about it. However, if this is just a stunt for the Weisenthal Center to needle Reepalu, that's a good thing too!
13:54 December 16, 2010 by tombby11
@wolverine2k :

Well.. Last time the green areas created a religion, WWII started
14:27 December 16, 2010 by emphir
There is quite a big difference between an ideology and a religion.
14:40 December 16, 2010 by tombby11
@emphir . When they are used for wrong purposes , then there is no difference
16:50 December 16, 2010 by svenskdod
@tombby11: Correction.... When they are used for the wrong purposes, then the results are the same.
18:35 December 16, 2010 by kingdavid
Wow! Who knew that Sweden's the Local came equipped with prophets like wolverine? Do you do lottery numbers as well? As a half Jew I'm not scared at all of southern Sweden, if and when I travel to South Sweden if anyone comes at me hard I will destroy them-take that to the bank.
18:43 December 16, 2010 by Tanskalainen
Read your history books. When the Jews flee an area a slum is left behind. The mayor of Malmo is a coward and a dolt.
19:02 December 16, 2010 by motti
the Jew is considered the barometer of social morality and inclusion. when the jews face trouble and leave, that is when malmoe residents will need to consider their own local requirements. If I were a Jewish Swede, I would not leave Sweden. However, I would choose not to live where I was not wanted, that includes Malmoe.
20:07 December 16, 2010 by Investor612
A society that has cities in which its native born citizens are not welcome, enter only with the risk of violence, is a doomed society.

That description incluses not just Sweden, but much of Western Europe and the US as well.
20:26 December 16, 2010 by Robert Savosnick
No Jew whom I know is ever going to denounce Israel, criticise it yes, argue about some of it's policies yes, defend it's sovereignty yes but denounce it? he would have to be a meshuggener. If the law of the land states that it is against the law to express hate speech and no one is arrested for doing so that is something like asking when a tree topples over in a forest does it make a sound if there is no one there to hear it? In this regard the authorities who are tasked with protecting all our citizens and then some obviously see no evil hear no evil and speak no evil at their peril when there are no longer any Jews left to persecute do they have any idea whom will be next?
20:54 December 16, 2010 by flobalob
This is entirely of the Jews own making by refusing to assimilate into Swedish culture.
21:00 December 16, 2010 by Ravioli
Another example of Muslim hypocrisy. The call others "racists" and "Nazis" and whatever else they were taught to say when they arrived here in order to get what they want but then they go about being "racists" themselves.
21:12 December 16, 2010 by unseen


i am not a Muslim, however, i come from middle east.

since we look alike and we are all Muslims to you, please don't blame 'climate change' on Muslims!!!

so, excuse my ignorance, how is this one blamed on Muslims???
21:19 December 16, 2010 by Syftfel
And how do we rectify this perception? If Sweden, of all countries, cannot guarantee the safety of her vistors, how low has she sunk? And, assuming it's true, what caused this descent into chaos and mayhem? - Wait, I have the answer; The social democrats and their offensive social and welfare policies. That's what!
21:54 December 16, 2010 by Ravioli
@Unseen- Why do you think it is that all of the Jews are leaving Southern Sweden? Who do you think that the harassment and violence towards Jews there comes from? Come on, man.
22:06 December 16, 2010 by unseen

ahh, got ya!

23:59 December 16, 2010 by Ravioli

Some of my best friends here in Sweden are Iraqis who had to leave their country simply because they were not Muslims and their lives were in danger. They were threatened with death on a daily basis....again, only because they were not Muslims. So, no. Not all Arabs are Muslims to me. I simply am pointing out that Muslims are the most bigoted people in the world. You should know better than I.
01:11 December 17, 2010 by JoeSwede
The Jews are the canary in the coal mine in this instence.

The funny part is that after everyone has left Sweden except for the far left and the muslims, guess what is going to happen to the far left.

Some TV advertising about the importance of living together...billboards, bus and tunnelbana. Tolerance people...and reprogramming for others.
02:51 December 17, 2010 by Tanskalainen
@flobalob Did you overdose on your sh*t pills this morning?
04:03 December 17, 2010 by ericrufinosiah
I do agree that not all Arabs are Muslims though there are

Christiana and others on a small scale and most of them are

being victimised and threatened.So,I would suggest that the

Swedish Government " welcome " them to come to Sweden instead

of welcoming those holier than thou types " anyway,I hope that

the native Swedish should always be smart and alert and dont

be fooled by some " Actors " who are condemning the recent

inhumane,brutal,cruel and heinous terrorist act.
07:04 December 17, 2010 by philster61
Religion poisons everything
08:53 December 17, 2010 by qed16
Many of the non-Muslim Arabs that emigrated to places like Sweden and the US left to escape persecution from the same intolerant, violent, Muslim fascists who are calling for tolerance now...

How well do they practice it on their own? The answer is, they don't. And they should get none in return.

Don't believe the lies about the "religion of peace". It's an evil authoritarian cult.

Look at what they are going to do to this poor woman in Pakistan:

08:58 December 17, 2010 by engagebrain

'This is entirely of the Jews own making by refusing to assimilate into Swedish culture'

Replace Jews with ......... and you might be getting closer to the cause of the problem.

Jews are not a obvious cause of civil strife - no demands for special treatment or for dead cartoonists.
16:03 December 17, 2010 by Cromulent
These are just the wages of Islam and multiculturalism.
16:41 December 17, 2010 by Cornelius Hamelberg
The lives and property of everyone in the realm have to be protected:

Article 7

"All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination."

It‘s always good to go to the sources and find out exactly what was said::



Flob-a-bob is only being either sarcastic in a very ironic sort of way or he is being flippant and provocative.

I've googled Robert Savosnick and would have you know that he is speaking from personal experience…

Question for flob-a-dob: Please correct me where I'm wrong, but was there any country in Europe in which Jews were more assimilated? You are aware that this most civilised European country and its German heartland which produced Mozart (Salzburg, Austria) and Beethoven (Bonn) and Goethe (Frankfurt) and all that contemporary modern philosophy notwithstanding, the Nazis did not make any distinction between “assimilated” or “not assimilated”, secular or religious Jews or even Jews on whose foreheads had been sprinkled some holy water as a sign of “Conversion” to Christianity.

Jews were killed – deliberately murdered because they were JEWS:
16:51 December 17, 2010 by cmbsweden
Cornelius has it right on the money.....

Hard for me to believe an elected official can get away with the comments I have read on here and still keep his office. The people of Malmö deserve much better...no matter who they are, what they look like, or where they come from originally.

Come on people......are you haters out there so insecure of yourselves that you can only feel good about yourselves by running someone else down? Sheesh, get a life.....
17:17 December 17, 2010 by tadchem
In the US we have people who can manage resources very well, and become wealthier, and we have people who cannot manage resources well, and become poorer. We also have 'politicians' who believe they can gain the support among the 'poor' by confiscating resources from those who manage them well and 'redistributing' those resources to those who don't. Such short-sightedness weakens the economy by directing resources away from those who till use them well and towards those who would squander them. This short-sightedness also weakens the society by encouraging the 'poor' at the expense of the 'rich'. This model for political success is unsustainable.

I mention all this because historically Jews, with their high literacy rate, have usually been concentrated in the ranks of those who manage resources well.

The road to success is not to take resources from the Jews while insulting them, but to take lessons from them while emulating them.
17:49 December 17, 2010 by J Jack
I don't suppose anyone in Sweden has ever been arrested or convicted for hate crimes. Does anyone know?
17:53 December 17, 2010 by cmbsweden
Good question.
19:39 December 17, 2010 by Cornelius Hamelberg

Ah , right on the money - on the money too.

Half the story has still not been told.

Arne Ruth wrote quite a bit about “Holocaust Gold”:


20:42 December 17, 2010 by tadzio
This could be a net plus for the Swedish tourist industry. Many may be attracted to hotel dining rooms with fewer loud, obnoxious guests. These people see themselves as "special." Many others do too, though not in a nice way.

But do that many people really care about this? The whole thing is silly.
21:41 December 17, 2010 by Torontonian
tadio, it seems like you are thinking it is a good "Final Solution" to the problem of those "loud, obnoxious guests"?
00:57 December 18, 2010 by kenny8076
Im Atheist.......... and soooooooo glad to be born with a brain...... no matter what news station you turn on whats the ONE belief never on there for this kind of stuff?! ill let you all answer that one....... what a joke.... i thought this was almost 2011
07:51 December 18, 2010 by Abbot
It looks like tadio has confused this story for one of ones about the local Muslims, because he has descrbed them perfectly - loud, obnoxious and think they are special.
09:06 December 18, 2010 by cmbsweden

How is that different than how certain Swedes act, or Danes, or Americans, or whomever?

Anyone who thinks because they are endowed with "specialness" simply based on their country of birth, religion, skin color, or political ideology is most likely a narcissist anyway......

The actions or deeds of an individual may make them special (Ghandi for example), but nothing else.

To paraphrase Martin Luther King "we should be judged by the content of our character, not the color of our skin (or an of the things I mentioned above)....."
10:29 December 18, 2010 by planet.sweden
I see the new Nazi storm troopers made up of an unholy combination of the European Left and Third World illiterates are once again out in force on this forum spreading their usual bile about, and seeking to justify attacks on, Jewish people.

This forum is a joke. A bad one.
10:39 December 18, 2010 by cmbsweden
@Planet Sweden

Just curious, why do you single out the European Left?

I haven't seen anything in this forum, or any other that would cause me to think that "group" is responsible for any anti-Sematic rhetoric. Not saying they haven't, just I haven't seen that at all. If anything, most of the anti-Jew, anti whatever on these forums seem to come from those on the far right.
18:34 December 18, 2010 by henry.bn
Apart from the pretty bit in the middle, Malmö has always struck me as a bit of a dump anyway. Who would want to visit it?
12:34 December 20, 2010 by andreasbe
Hey All,

Whilst Planning a re imegration to Sthlm I never thought that I would see such BS in a comment/Vent are, people that feel opressed by another group are generally guilty of their own opressing ideas and ways, so stop your BS and focus on what is important.... like what your typical Miss universe candident will identify as her objective.. "World Peace",
Today's headlines
Gothenburg 'one of Europe's most segregated cities'
An Isis flag in Kirkuk, Iraq. Photo: Uncredited/AP

One in ten school students in Gothenburg's north-eastern suburbs sympathize with religious extremist organizations, according to a survey.

Julian Assange
Sweden won't suspend Assange warrant for funeral
Assange has been in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012. Photo: Alastair Grant/AP

The WikiLeaks founder has requested a temporary suspension of an arrest warrant so he could leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London for the funeral of his mentor.

Swedish football diehard who went viral doesn't get the fuss
Possibly the most dedicated fan in the world. Photo: Patric Söderström/TT

A picture of Gefle IF celebrating with the only fan to make a 1164km round trip to see them has gone viral. The Local spoke to the diehard in question.

'I want to see women priests in the Catholic Church'
Archbishop Antje Jackelén meeting Pope Francis earlier in 2016. Photo: L'Osservatore Romano/AP

'I told the pope last year during a speech it is time to no longer speak for women about women, but to speak with women,' Sweden's Archbishop says.

Sweden one of world's easiest places to do business: report
A meeting at a Stockholm office. Photo: Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

It is easier to do business in Sweden now than it was last year, according to a World Bank report.

This Swede has built a procrastinator's dream
Anders Åberg has built a website that allows you to hear what’s going on above the Earth. Photo: Personal & NASA

Ever wondered what's going on in the sky above the earth and in space? Now you can hear for yourself.

Presented by Malmö Tourism
Seven reasons why Malmö is the football capital of Sweden
Players from FC Rosengård, Sweden's most successful women's football team. Photo: Hangsna

It’s official, and anyone who tells you otherwise is wrong.

Fake police car driver seized after confronting real police
File photo of a police car. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Three men in a fake police car were left red-faced after they tried to stop a man in southern Sweden who turned out to be an off-duty officer.

This tiny bird can fly for ten months straight: scientists
The common swift while not in flight. Photo: Madis Veskimeister/Wikimedia

Swedish scientists have found that this bird stays in the air for almost a year without landing.

Why the Pope is visiting Sweden next week
Pope Francis in the Vatican. Photo: AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino

Pope to nail reconciliation agenda to Lutherans' door in southern Sweden.

Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
The Local Voices
Antonio, 19, is a Syrian refugee and porn actor hoping to change perceptions of refugees
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
People-watching: October 26th
Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Is Game of Thrones coming to Sweden?
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
People-watching: October 20th
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available