‘Sweden is the most dangerous country in Europe,’ writes Germany’s top-selling newspaper

By Lucie Ctverakova
5 Min Read

After examining data from the Swedish Crime Prevention Council, Germany’s Bild newspaper writes that “Sweden is the most dangerous country in Europe.”

Bild, which is Germany’s most widely-read and best-selling newspaper, analyzed a study related to fatal gun violence, with the data showing just how dangerous Sweden has become.

“In the EU, an average of eight people per million people are victims of fatal violence. In Sweden, the number in 2020 was twelve people per million inhabitants. When it comes to the victims of firearms, the difference between Europe and Sweden is even greater. In the EU, an average of 1.6 people per million people die from gunshot wounds – in Sweden the figure is four, almost three times as many,” Bild writes.

While murders have been steadily falling in other European countries, in Sweden they are rising. Much of the crime is fueled by migrants and migrant clans, which operate in the country’s biggest cities.

Some of the murders become major news stories in Sweden. Just on Thursday, the award-winning Swedish rapper Einár was shot dead on his doorstep in the Stockholm suburb of Hammarby. The circumstances of the crime have not yet been clarified, but the police do not want to rule out that Einár, as a rapper, had contacts with various criminal gangs.

Einár’s real name was Nils Kurt Erik Einar Grönberg. He was only 19 years old, and his death became part of a terrifying Swedish statistic. Because Einár is the 217th victim shot dead in Sweden in the past five years, Bild reports.

When the study was published, however, BRÅ drew attention to the fact that the comparisons unfortunately sometimes lag. The Swedish figures are from 2020, the EU figures are three years older because only Sweden was able to provide up-to-date statistics. Also, crime is not as thoroughly recorded in many countries as it is in Sweden.

For example, Germany only appears marginally in the Swedish study, as there is no recent research or statistics on the causes of death crime, murder weapons, and so on in the Federal Republic of Germany. According to Statistica.com, there were 2.9 murder victims per million inhabitants in Germany in 2020. The Statistica analysis does not show who is the victim of offenses involving firearms or gang crime. But it is clear that Sweden, with a total of 12 murder victims per million inhabitants, is far more dangerous than Germany.

Most of the shootings in Sweden are related to gang violence.

“Drug trafficking is a key issue here, and there are close links between shootings and bombings and the drug market,” the Swedish police said recently when an investigation into gang crime was published.

These gangs usually fight in the suburbs of Stockholm, Gothenburg, and Malmö.

Why it has become more and more dangerous in Sweden for around 15 years is one of the big questions that numerous experts have been dealing with for a long time.

The criminologist Manne Gerell from the University of Malmö gave the Aftenposten newspaper a list of possible causes.

According to Gerell, the three main reasons are the increase in the number of gangs and criminal networks, the poor integration of immigrants, and the housing projects of the 1960s and 1970s. At that time, Sweden relied on new suburbs that still exist. Today there are around 60 such suburbs, in which mostly immigrants or socially disadvantaged Swedes live. Free choice of schools was also introduced in Sweden in the 1990s. These suburbs and the free choice of schools meant that many groups remained isolated after immigrating to Sweden.

It is clear that it cannot go on like this. More and more Swedes are afraid for their lives because innocent passers-by often become victims of warring gangs.

At the end of August, the Swedish Interior Ministry published a 34-point plan designed to help the country fight gang crime in the future, including harsher penalties, more video surveillance, and easier to obtain wiretaps. However, others say that migration to Sweden needs to be brought under control before the issue can truly be tackled. Polling also shows that a majority of Swedes want less immigration to their country.

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