Prime Minister Stefan Lofven of Sweden has admitted his country has a problem with anti-Semitism in general and the attitudes of immigrants from the Middle East in particular.
The Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet reported that Mr. Lofven made his frank admission Tuesday at a news conference on the sidelines of the climate conference in Paris.
“We must be very clear that this anti-Semitism and hatred of Jews has no place in our society,” the Social Democrat prime minister said. “Absolutely no room at all.”
“This shouldn’t have any place,” he continued, expanding on an earlier statement in which he said he was “terribly upset” by recent attacks on Jews and called for “a tolerant and open society where everyone feels safe.”
His comments follow an increase in attacks against Sweden’s Jews and their places of worship.
As Breitbart Jerusalem reported, just three days before Mr. Lofven spoke, a group of around 20 masked men hurled firebombs at a Gothenburg synagogue, hours after an anti-Israel march in Sweden’s second largest city.
Chairman of the local Jewish Assembly Allan Stutzinsky reported that around 30 young people were attending a party at the synagogue during the attack, and fled to the basement for safety until police arrived. “There were dozens of masked people throwing burning objects into the courtyard,” he told local media, adding that rain that night helped prevent the building from catching fire.
Tonight,Jewish teenagers hide in the basement of the Gothenburg synagogue after firebombs are thrown at the building.I ask you FM @margotwallstrom & PM Löfven – why will you not protect us Jews?Why do you align yourself with those who want us dead?Why are we not worth protecting?
— Annika H Rothstein (@truthandfiction) December 9, 2017
The attacks on Jews in Sweden reached a wider public audience in June when surveys revealed “lots of Swedish Jews are afraid of showing their Jewishness.” That saw Stockholm lifting efforts to teach about the Holocaust as a means of fighting against anti-Semitism, the director of a government-run program targeting the issue said.
Mr. Lofven acknowledged that problem when he said that Jews were under assault from all sides. He also expressed concern about what he said was rising anti-Semitism among immigrants from the Middle East.
“That goes against the very moral fiber of Sweden,” he told Aftonbladet. “Here all people have the same value.”
Margot Wallstrom, Sweden’s foreign minister, described the violence as “deplorable and unacceptable”. She added: “Anti-Semitism, threats and violence have no place in our society.”
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