Sweden seems to be one of those countries that does well in everything: gender equality, education, politics… So when an attack said to have a “racist motive” occurs, it shakes one to the core.
The 21-year-old swordsman, whose name has yet to be released by police, came into the school dressed as the Star Wars villain Darth Vader. At first, the students thought it was a Halloween prank until the teacher asked him to leave because he was scaring the students. It was then that the Darth Vader impersonator fatally wounded the 20 year-old teacher with his sword before chasing students around the school.
Two people, the teacher and a pupil, died and two other people were injured. The senseless attack ended when police arrived at the scene and fatally shot the killer. From the evidence gathered at the scene, police said the attack had all the marks of a racially-motivated attack.
“He selected his victims and attacked the dark-skinned ones and left the light-skinned ones alone,” Thord Haraldsson, the lead investigator in the case, told journalists on Friday. Prime Minister Stefan Löfven said on Thursday that the day was a “black day for Sweden.”
As far back as 2014, the prime minister had been facing threats from the Sweden Democrats, whose policies have been about preventing any policy that contributed to increasing immigration. At the time, the Prime Minister declared the behaviour of the party “exceptionally irresponsible.”
Sweden has historically been a welcoming country for asylum seekers and other immigrants. However, a lot of suspicious attacks have been occurring around the country lately, especially in the wake the migrant crisis.
A few days before this attack, a fire was set to a centre of welcoming asylum seekers. Fourteen people had to flee for their lives. An unused school building also set to welcome refugees was set on fire as well.
The attack on the school also proves not to be an isolated attack. The school is located in Kronan, which incidentally, has a high proportion of immigrants.
This senseless attack has shaken the country, but Swedes are not going to be abandoning their ideals because of it. The prime minister exhorted his country-people to remain united.
“Take care of each other. Together, we take care of Sweden,” he urged.