A grenade amnesty period begins in Sweden this week with the government guaranteeing those who hand in explosive devices to police will not face arrest or prosecution.
The weapons amnesty is set to take place between October 15th to January 11th of next year and is aimed at getting grenades and other explosives off the streets where they are being used by organised criminal gangs, broadcaster SVT reports.
BBC and Politico Reveal Sweden’s Hand Grenade Problem… Three Years After Breitbart London https://t.co/QwUbJwZn60
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) April 19, 2018
The weapons amnesty is not the first in Swedish history, but it is different than previous attempts in that those with explosives are not encouraged to bring them to police stations but call for qualified explosives disposal officers who will then assess whether or not a bomb squad needs to be deployed to the area.
Bengt Grönlund, project manager of the amnesty, said: “We all want a safer and safer society. Amnesty is a way we hope to help reduce the incidence of, for example, hand grenades in criminal environments.”
Grenade attacks and other crimes involving explosives in Sweden have increased over the last several years with hand grenades becoming a popular weapon for organised criminal gangs.
According to police officer Gunnar Appelgren, the coordinator of the Stockholm police force’s gang conflict programme, grenades are relatively easy to procure.
Sweden, from socialist utopia to grenade attack capital in one short decade https://t.co/yfyaC8b00W
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) August 6, 2017
A report released earlier this year by the National Forensic Centre (NFC) noted that hand grenades had been used a total of 43 times across the country last year by criminals.
While some attacks have been among rival criminal gangs, Swedish police have also been targets. Last year in Helsingborg, a police station was bombed causing widespread outrage with former Prime Minister Stefan Löfven labelling it an attack on democracy.