Molotov Cocktails Thrown At Church in Swedish No-Go Zone

molotov cocktail in activist hand
Getty Images

An attacker threw three Molotov cocktails at a church in the no-go Stockholm suburb of Spånga-Tensta.

The arson attack took place on Wednesday at around 4 a.m., with the suspect throwing one of the bottle bombs at the church’s door and the other two at the windows, smashing them.

Pastor Jerker Alsterlund told Swedish broadcaster SVT: “It is a strong act of symbolism against a church. Why anyone would want to do this, I don’t know.”

“We have had no threats or anything like that,” he added.

According to the broadcaster, a parish hall in the area had been the target of a similar attack in December 2018, when an explosive was detonated at the building. No suspects were ever arrested.

The attack took place in one of Stockholm’s no-go suburbs, with Spånga-Tensta being located just a few miles from the infamous no-go area of Rinkeby. In 2017, Sweden’s chief prosecutor Lise Tamm described Rinkeby as a “war zone”.

That same year, both Tensta and Rinkeby were featured in a video showing youths attacking police officers. The police bodycam footage also showed the youths insulting and taunting the officers, telling them: “You are not in charge here.”

Attacks on churches are far from unprecedented in Sweden. Last year, vandals attacked a church in the multicultural southern city of Malmö for seven days in a row, forcing the Evangelical Lutheran Church to set up nightly patrols.

In the municipality of Ronneby, meanwhile, a violent mob beat an immigrant after he attempted to stop them from setting a church on fire during a riot.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.