All 230 employees of Malmö cemetery administration are to be trained in dealing with armed funeral guests, in response to a “new phenomenon” in the increasingly multicultural Swedish city, in which mourners carry weapons and don bulletproof vests to say their final goodbyes.
“It’s not just on the hospital trauma wards in Malmö that staff have to deal with a threatening atmosphere after someone gets shot,” SVT reported Sunday, in a piece which notes growing concern amongst church and cemetery employees over the rise in weapons making an appearance at funerals in the city.
“It’s terrible. Cemeteries are supposed to be sanctuaries from violence,” said Malmö cemetery manager Sven-Erik Aspeklev, who told the state broadcaster that mourners are increasingly armed at funerals which follow deadly violence in the city.
“Some carry weapons, and we also see bulletproof vests,” he said. “For our employees, it is threatening to be faced with weapons in their immediate vicinity.”
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) November 10, 2016
Described as a “new phenomenon”, the cemetery manager told SVT that the administration is to procure training for the more than 200 staff members who work in the city’s graveyards.
“What situations might workers be facing? How can we help them meet these challenges? How can we equip staff and managers to best deal with this?” are among questions Aspeklev hopes will be addressed when staff receive training on the issue, he told the public broadcaster.
But for now, workers have just been advised to keep away from any funeral guests who look to be carrying weapons, according to the cemetery manager.
“Members of staff should leave the site if they find themselves in a situation they believe to be threatening,” he said.
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The 59-year-old said he has not counted the number of funerals at which mourners have arrived equipped with weapons, but that he recalls there having been a handful so far this year.
“It’s four to five too many. The cemetery is a place of silence, a peaceful place,” added the manager, whose Twitter account has retweeted numerous messages which brand critics of mass migration “racist”, and “Nazis”.
Close to half of Malmö residents (43 per cent) have a foreign background, with Iraqis making up the largest single group, and the population of Sweden’s third largest city has exploded in recent years, almost entirely thanks to immigration from the third world.
While Britain’s left wing Independent has hailed the city as a place “where Syrian refugees and hipsters have bonded over food”, the darker side of mass migration means that former soldiers redeployed to Malmö’s police bomb disposal unit have likened constant grenade attacks in the city to their time served in war-torn regions of Iraq.
Breitbart London reported last month how hospitals in Sweden have had to step up security in response to the growing problems caused by friends and family members of patients with gunshot wounds turning up to wards wearing bulletproof vests, carrying knives, and in some cases even arming inpatients.