Two powerful explosions have rocked Stockholm just a few hundred meters and some 14 minutes apart, causing extensive damage to the properties, Swedish police have said.
According to the police, the explosions took place in apartment buildings at night, tearing down balconies and breaking windows. The blast was so powerful that it was heard in other parts of the Swedish capital and its suburbs.
“The door flew seven meters into the apartment”, a blast survivor from Kista told the newspaper Expressen. In addition, the blast made a huge hole in the staircase, causing “great havoc”, Expressen wrote.
About ten people were tended to on the spot by the arriving ambulances, but only one person was admitted to hospital, which is surprising, given the extent of the damage. In total, about 50 people were evacuated.
A local resident, who works late shifts, was awake at the time of the blast and saw a person run down the parking lot and leave in a car, the newspaper Aftonbladet reported.
According to Aftonbladet, there are links between last night's bombing and the powerful blast that shook Östermalm, yet another district of Stockholm, last week. The police confirmed that a preliminary investigation in underway, but could not corroborate any link between the two blasts.
This night's explosions were the latest in a long series of blasts targeting residential buildings. In 2019 alone, a total of 121 blasts occurred across Sweden.
JUST NU: Explosionerna i Husby kopplas till sprängdådet på Östermalm, skriver Aftonbladet.https://t.co/5L7o5q626K— Expressen (@Expressen) 21. tammikuuta 2020
Following the explosions, opposition Moderate party leader Ulf Kristersson demanded that the government present an action plan.
“All of Sweden now expects a credible plan of action and the mobilisation of all available resources to break this devastating development”, Kristersson wrote on Facebook, accusing the government of doing far too little to remedy the problem.
Interior Minister Mikael Damberg responded by vowing to introduce further penalties for explosives and smuggling later in 2020 as part of the 34-point program against gang violence that the government presented last fall.
“Society cannot accept that individuals expose others to such a danger”, Damberg wrote on Facebook.
“These bomb attacks start to completely overpower. Sweden is reminiscent of Beirut in the 1980s. After all, the police must increase the priorities to the maximum in order to get the assailants. Get help from the military, [Security Service] Säpo, FBI, Interpol – whatever it takes,” blogger Projekt Morpheus tweeted.
De här bombattackerna börjar gå helt överstyr. Sverige påminner ju om Beirut på 1980-talet.— Projekt Morpheus (@ProjektMorpheus) 21. tammikuuta 2020
Polisen måste ju öka prioriteringarna till max för att sätta dit attentatsmännen. Ta hjälp från Försvaret, Säpo, FBI, Interpol - whatever it takes.