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Out of every 100 of those guilty or suspected of murder or attempted murder in Sweden using firearms, 90 percent have at least one foreign-born parent. The vast majority, around 80% having roots in the Middle East or North Africa, while others have their roots in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Turkey, Somalia, and Eritrea. This is the conclusion of research instigated by Swedish Newspaper ‘Dagens Nyheter’ which was published on Saturday.

The study looked at 53 convicted and 47 suspected perpetrators involved in shootings in public, that took place after 2013. In about half of researched cases, the men were born in Sweden, whilst the rest migrated to the country at a young age.

Commenting on the study, Amir Rostani, sociologist at the Stockholm University, says that:

The fact is that street gangs and violence are phenomena that occur in some areas, and most of the people who live in those areas are of foreign descent. (…)This is well in line with a study I previously conducted, on members of criminal networks

Dagens Nyheter notes that it is unusual to look at the background of perpetrators in Sweden. For example, while Sweden’s Crime Prevention Council (Brå), responsible for compiling official crime statistics, has released a number of reports on firearm related incidents, none have mentioned the background of those involved. When asked for about this, Lars Korsell, co-author of the 2016 report Criminal Networks and Gangs, commented that “this is not something that the government has ever asked us to examine.

But the Director General of Brå, Erik Wennerström, suggests this is about to change, as he tells Dagens Nyheter:

I think we could discover some interesting things if we investigate this data. We already know that the new arrivals are generally overrepresented in crime, but we don’t know how long it takes before that trend starts to slow down. (…) We try to keep an eye out for patterns we can study so as to gain new insight into crime, and this could be one. This could well be one such pattern.

Meanwhile, at the two-day rally ‘Suburb of Violence’ in Rinkeby, held to protest the rampant violence in that suburb, which saw 22 murders take place in less than two years, speakers blamed racism, colonialism, and politicians for the high rate of crime.

Ninety percent of Rinkeby residents are either born abroad or from two foreign parents. Rinkeby also was the site of riots in 2010, 2013 and February of 2017.