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Ikea stabbing victims remembered at mall

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Ikea stabbing victims remembered at mall
Visitor to Eriklunds retail park have been signing the book. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT
15:24 CEST+02:00
A book of condolences has opened at the Erikslund retail park in Västerås where a mother and son were fatally stabbed on Monday, as Ikea and Västerås Municipality offer counselling to staff and shoppers.
Ikea workers spent Tuesday recieving counselling from external health advisors contracted by the furniture giant as well as mental health experts from Västerås Municipality, a press spokesperson from the company, Daniela Rogosic, told The Local.
 
"Right now our full focus is on our coworkers. Shoppers and others who were at the shopping centre are also being offered help," she said.
 
The manager of the store Mattias Johansson (below) told regional newspaper VLT on Monday that he had experienced "the worst working day of my life".

Anna Flamborg, a counsellor for Västerås Municipality said that she had spoken to several witnesses who remained very upset.
 
"People are distressed and unable to take in what has happened. They are struggling with the fact it happened at Ikea...which is somehow a symbol of people's homes," she told the TT newswire.

A book of condolences has opened at the Erikslund retail park, allowing people to leave messages remembering the victims. 

Shoppers have reported a subdued atmosphere at the retail park, where Ikea's flag is flying at half mast.
 
Leif Lindkvist, a customer who left flowers outside Ikea's entrance on Tuesday afternoon, told the TT news agency.
 
"It's the least I can do. I can not believe that such a thing can happen. And at Ikea. I do not get it."
 
 
Police were continuing to surround the Ikea store on Tuesday afternoon and it was set to remain closed until further notice. Security has also been boosted at other retailers in the area to try to reassure shoppers.
 
 
Officers are continuing to appeal for witnesses to the stabbings, which took place on Monday lunchtime. The victims were a mother, 55, and her 28-year-old son.
 
Police say they have arrested two people from Eritrea over the violence. The younger suspect, 23, has been questioned, while a 35-year-old man remains in hospital with life-threatening injuries and has yet to be interrogated.
 
The suspects knew one another and were living at the same accommodation complex for asylum seekers, police have said. 
 
 
Officers have stepped up security in the area and at other refugee centres across the country in an attempt to avoid any potential backlash against the immigrant community.
 
"Respective local police districts have been tasked with these measures... to be there in order to create security for everyone there, both for those who work and for those who live there," Västerås police chief Per Ågren (left) told Swedish media on Tuesday.

All photos: TT

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