At a rally in Florida on Saturday, US president Donald Trump once again blamed migration in Europe for a spate of terror attacks in Brussels, Nice, and Paris. He then added an incident in Sweden to the list, telling thousand of supporters: “You look at what’s happening in Germany, you look at what’s happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this? Sweden.”
Most Swedes couldn’t believe it. The comment left them—and the rest of the world—baffled, because there was no terrorist incident in Sweden on Friday night. Trump’s comment left some wondering whether he may have confused the Scandinavian country with Sehwan in Pakistan, where more than 85 people were killed Thursday in a suicide bombing at a Sufi shrine.
Trump’s comment kept Swedish librarian Emma Johansson incredibly busy Saturday night. The Swedish government’s official Twitter account is managed by a different citizen every week. This week, Johansson was at the helm, and she was quick to quash the false information of an attack.
Sweden’s former prime minister Carl Bildt went as far to ask what Trump might have been smoking. Others took to Twitter to fill in the blanks using the hashtags #swedenincident and #Lastnightinsweden
The comments were also ridiculed by former first daughter Chelsea Clinton. “Did they catch the Bowling Green Massacre perpetrators?” Clinton tweeted, a reference to an attack fabricated by Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway.
The last significant ideological attacks in Sweden took place in 2015, when an armed far-right sympathizer stormed a school and killed two children; and in 2010, when a suicide bomber killed himself and wounded two others in Stockholm.