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     Home > Politics  >  2013-05-24 14:19:24
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Fifth night of riots in Stockholm

(Vatican Radio) Five consecutive nights of rioting in Stockholm have launched a national debate in Sweden on immigration, unemployment and social inequality.

About 30 cars were set on fire on Thursday alone, and rioters caused widespread damage to private property.

Though the exact motivation for the rioting is still unclear, there have been many theories suggested after five nights of unrest, and Swedes have begun a national debate about immigration, unemployment and social inequality.

Police in the deprived, largely immigrant suburb of Husby shot a 69-year-old man dead last week after he reportedly threatened to kill them with a machete.

Police said they tried unsuccessfully to negotiate with the man after learning a woman was inside the flat along with him.

The founder of a local youth group explained to Swedish media the riots were a reaction to "police brutality".

Unlike other recent riots looting has not been widespread. Instead, the violence has focused on schools, libraries and police stations.

Most of the cars that have been set on fire have been family cars and vans, and not the luxury cars of the rich. On the first night of the unrest, more than 100 cars were set ablaze.

Locals have suggested the motive was anger over the lack of jobs, while others have blamed poor parenting.

About 80 per cent of the residents of the Stockholm suburb are either first- or second-generation immigrants, which has also opened the debate about immigration.

Many have come from war-torn countries like Iraq, Somalia, the former Yugoslavia, Afghanistan and Syria.

Sweden's population is composed of 15 per cent immigrants, the highest of the Nordic countries.

Listen to the report by Matthew French: RealAudioMP3


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