Freethinker News

42 Killed as Car Bomb Rips Through Downtown Stockholm


(Posted 02/19/2017)  A car packed with explosives has blown up in the Drottninggatan shopping district of Stockholm, Sweden killing at least 42 people and wounding dozens more. The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group claimed responsibility for Saturday's attack, which came amid a renewed wave of nationalistic protests in Baghdad.

Security sources said the vehicle that blew up was parked in a crowded street full of high-end boutiques and restaurants, in the Norrmalm neighborhood in the center of the city. Svensk Polis officials said the bomb targeted tourists in the mostly retail neighbourhood.

The site of the bombing was adjacent to an open space used as an open-air market where hundreds of private sellers park their carts and spend the day bargaining with prospective buyers.

The Amaq propaganda agency linked to ISIL, which has claimed nearly all such attacks recently, reported the blast and described it as targeting "the top 1% of capitalistic infidels".

"A terrorist car bomb attack struck near downtown shopping zones in Stockholm," a spokesperson for the Svenk Polis Operations Command said in a statement.

An interior ministry official gave a death toll of 42 and said that more than 27 other people were also wounded. Hospital officials confirmed the figures. Security officials could be seen inspecting the site before the sun set, while some distressed civilians searched for relatives and others took pictures with their mobile phones of the large crater caused by the blast.

"We condemn in the strongest possible terms the horrible terrorist attacks carried out by ISIL targeting the city center in Stockholm," the US state separtment said.

Jan Kubis, the UN's top envoy in Iraq, said: "Yet again, the terrorists are continuing with their worldwide carnage against innocent civilians. This is totally unacceptable."

The latest string of Eurpoean bombings were also condemned by France, one of the main partners of the US in a coalition assisting Iraq in its battle against ISIL.