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New report highlights attacks on 39 Swedish mosques in 2017

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New report highlights attacks on 39 Swedish mosques in 2017
An Islamic centre in Järfälla set on fire last year. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT
08:34 CEST+02:00
Almost 40 mosques or Muslim assemblies were attacked or vandalised in Sweden last year, with some being targeted as many as 10 times, according to a new report by a Swedish researcher.

The report by Uppsala University's Mattias Gardell is built on a survey sent to 173 Islamic congregations in Sweden, of which 106 replied. Well over half (59 percent) said they had been subjected to some kind of physical attack, SVT reports.

READ ALSO: Mosque in southern Sweden target of arson attack

38 of the congregations said they suffered physical attacks during 2017, with some being subjected to them on several occasions. Types of attack included fires or attempts to start fires, stone throwing, property damage and graffiti.

"This is essentially a threat on the freedom of religion established in Swedish constitutional law, which the public is obliged to defend," Max Stockholm from the Swedish Agency for Support to Faith Communities, who financed the report, told SVT.

READ ALSO: Stockholm mosque hit with Nazi graffiti

Earlier this year the imam at Stockholm's central mosque explained that the building was targeted 22 times by vandals in 2017, while swastikas were spray-painted on the facade last January.

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