Notorious "Ikea killer" Abraham Ukbagabir, who is currently imprisoned for the murder of two innocent people in an Ikea store in the Swedish city of Västerås in 2015, became the first convict to voluntarily request a transfer to Eritrea to serve the remainder of his sentence there. However, Sweden doesn't expel people to Eritrea due to humanitarian reasons, which is why his wish is unlikely to be granted, the Expressen daily reported.
Together with Syria and Iraq, Eritrea is one of the countries accounting for the greatest portion of asylum seekers in Sweden. Deportation to Eritrea, however, is prohibited in Sweden, because of the country's alleged human rights violations. In Swedish media, the case of Eritrean-Swedish journalist Dawit Isaak, who has been held in Eritrea since 2001 as a "traitor," is often used as an example thereof.
"Whatever happens to me in Eritrea, I accept it 100 percent," Abraham Ukbagabir said in his first interview ever.
In 2015, Ukbagabir slew 55-year-old Carola Herlin and her 28-year-old son Emil, whom he deliberately sought out from the crowd as "Swedish-looking."
"I considered it a crime against me when everyone else can stay in the country, but not me. To show that I had been unfairly treated and to get peace, I went to attack," Ukbagabir was quoted as saying during the trial.
In a long interview with Expressen, Ukbagagir revealed that his motive for leaving Eritrea for Europe was to support his family. He first arrived to Italy, where his fingerprints were registered. Subsequently, he tried moving to other countries, such as the UK, Norway and Denmark, but was deported to Italy time and again. In order to avoid deportation, he admitted that he tried to burn off his fingertips.
Upon arrival in Sweden, Ukbagabir was initially placed in a migrant accommodation, but decided to go underground. Despite ultimately being granted asylum in Italy, he nevertheless decided to go on a killing spree to get revenge.
"S*it happens! I understand that it's not a good thing. But I want to forget this," Ukbagabir told Expressen, commenting on the murders.
The brother of "Ikea murderer," Rober Berhene, is surprised that his sibling is still alive. By his own admission, killing two innocent people was likely to amount to death penalty, venturing that Europe apparently was "different" from Eritrea. The idea that his brother has a room of his own with a TV was "unimaginable" to him, Expressen reported.
The murderer's mother feels shame and sadness for what her son has caused in Sweden.
"They were innocent people. I will pray for them day and night. I am ashamed and sad," Okubit Tewerde told Expressen.
At the same time, she appreciates how the Swedish government is taking care of her son.
"I appreciate that the Swedish government takes care of my son as if he was their own child," she added.
While in Swedish prison, Ukbagabir was attacked and injured by fellow prisoners on multiple occasions, requiring hospital care. The Eritrean Justice Ministry said that an extradition would be possible if an agreement could be reached with Sweden.