Two 18 year-olds were arrested on Thursday in Malmo for trying to break into a Jewish community building in the city’s center during a demonstration in the Swedish city. JTA reports that five people gathered outside the Jewish community building, making anti-Semitic comments and attempting to bypass the building’s security guards.
Malmo police released the two arrested men after questioning, and local prosecutors have yet to decide whether to charge them with trespassing and intimidation. According to the president of Malmo’s Jewish community, Fred Kahn, the suspects filmed and photographed the building before their arrest.
Malmo, which has a Jewish population of approximately 1,000, has garnered a reputation in recent years as an anti-Semitic hotbed in southern Sweden. The city has also seen an increase in hate crimes against Jews in recent years.
In October 2013, Irish journalist Patrick Reilly donned a yarmulke in Malmo, where he lived, to see if he would be treated differently. He spoke to the Scroll about his cultural experiment.
I’ve lived in Malmö for two years and there have been lots of violent crimes during that time, but I’d never felt scared until I put on the kippah. I certainly have a much greater respect for people like Shmuel Goldberg and the local rabbi, Shneur Kesselman, who make their beliefs obvious, as they get the type of treatment I received for half a day every day. To be honest, it’s not something I would want to do again.
This latest incident, which occurred during a protest in which anti-Semitic slogans were featured, only adds to the troublesome climate in Malmo.