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Two men killed in shooting outside Swedish nightclub

Two men have died after being shot outside a nightclub in central Norrköping in southeastern Sweden.

Two men killed in shooting outside Swedish nightclub
Police and an ambulance at the scene outside a Norrköping night club. Photo: Niklas Luks / TT

Police first received reports of a shooting at 1.20am, and when they arrived at the scene they found two men with severe injuries. Both victims, aged 40 and 45, died later in the night, and their relatives have been informed.

Several areas of the town centre were cordoned off early on Thursday morning for technical investigation.

“We have around ten patrols at the scene at the moment,” said police press spokesperson Thomas Agnevik shortly after 3am. “There are several witnesses who saw things and we have spoken with some of them.”

No other people were injured in the shooting, but several windows at a nearby restaurant were damaged. 

And a man in his 20s was injured in a shooting in Katrineholm, about 50 kilometres north of Norrköping, on the same night. He was described as seriously injured but in a stable condition.

Swedish police recently announced a 'special national incident' to look into violent crime in Sweden, with the aim of reducing the number of explosions and shootings. This means that a temporary task force is set up to focus solely on the specified problem, and is given extra powers to make decisions and allocate resources to facilitate investigation and crime prevention.

Sweden's crime and homicide rates are both low when compared with many other countries, and previous decades in Sweden. But while the overall murder rate has not changed much in Sweden, the proportion of murders where a gun was used, and the proportion that are linked to gang violence, have risen over the past decade.  

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CRIME

Swedish Green leader: ‘Easter riots nothing to do with religion or ethnicity’

The riots that rocked Swedish cities over the Easter holidays were nothing to do with religion or ethnicity, but instead come down to class, the joint leader of Sweden's Green Party has told The Local in an interview.

Swedish Green leader: 'Easter riots nothing to do with religion or ethnicity'

Ahead of a visit to the school in Rosengård that was damaged in the rioting, Märta Stenevi said that neither the Danish extremist Rasmus Paludan, who provoked the riots by burning copies of the Koran, nor those who rioted, injuring 104 policemen, were ultimately motivated by religion. 

“His demonstration had nothing to do with religion or with Islam. It has everything to do with being a right extremist and trying to to raise a lot of conflict between groups in Sweden,” she said of Paludan’s protests. 

“On the other side, the police have now stated that there were a lot of connections to organised crime and gangs, who see this as an opportunity to raise hell within their communities.”

Riots broke out in the Swedish cities of Malmö, Stockholm, Norrköping, Linköping and Landskrona over the Easter holidays as a result of Paludan’s tour of the cities, which saw him burn multiple copies of the Koran, the holy book of Islam. 

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More than 100 police officers were injured in the riots, sparking debates about hate-crime legislation and about law and order. 

According to Stenevi, the real cause of the disorder is the way inequality has increased in Sweden in recent decades. 

“If you have big chasms between the rich people and poor people in a country, you will also have a social upheaval and social disturbance. This is well-documented all across the world,” she says. 
 
“What we have done for the past three decades in Sweden is to create a wider and wider gap between those who have a lot and those who have nothing.” 

 
The worst way of reacting to the riots, she argues, is that of Sweden’s right-wing parties. 
 
“You cannot do it by punishment, by adding to the sense of outsider status, you have to start working on actually including people, and that happens through old-fashioned things such as education, and a proper minimum income, to lift people out of their poverty, not to keep them there.”

This, she says, is “ridiculous”, when the long-term solution lies in doing what Sweden did to end extreme inequality at the start of the 20th century, when it created the socialist folkhem, or “people’s home”. 

“It’s easy to forget that 100 to 150 years ago, Sweden was a developing country, with a huge class of poor people with no education whatsoever. And we did this huge lift of a whole nation. And we can do this again,” she says. “But it needs resources, it needs political will.” 
 
 
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