Criminal motive suspected as Gothenburg blast wounds 16

Criminal exercise might have been behind an explosion that tore by means of an condominium constructing in Sweden's Gothenburg at present, authorities stated.

Sixteen individuals have been injured within the explosion, together with 4 who have been significantly damage.

Emergency responders stated that the blast didn’t appear to be an accident, in a rustic that has suffered dozens of precise or tried bombings linked to violent felony gangs lately.

Ambulances, hearth vans and emergency crews swarmed the scene this morning as thick smoke rose from the constructing, tv photos confirmed.

"It's obvious that a crime cannot be excluded," Interior Minister Mikael Damberg informed a joint press convention with Prime Minister Stefan Lofven.

Mr Lofven, whose authorities has been criticised lately for failing to rein in rising gang crime, informed reporters he didn’t need to "speculate" on the origin of the explosion.

"Everyone should know that society is always stronger than crime," he informed the press convention.

According to regional newspaper Goteborgs Posten, a police officer who just lately testified in a significant gang trial in Sweden's second metropolis lives within the constructing.

"Obviously we will look into this," the officer, whose identify was not disclosed, informed the newspaper.

The actual reason behind the blast, which triggered a fireplace within the constructing after it occurred simply earlier than 5am in central Gothenburg, was being investigated, police stated.

"The site has been closed off and rescue operations are under way," western regional police spokesman Hans-Jorgen Ostler stated hours after the blast.

"As soon as the site is secured, we will begin a technical investigation to determine the cause of the fire and explosion," he added.

Rescue operation chief John Pile stated that whereas an investigation was wanted "an explosion in a housing area, or an explosion in general, is not usually from natural causes".

Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenburg's largest, took in 16 individuals with accidents associated to the blast and subsequent hearth, press officer Ingrid Fredriksson stated.

"But it's not certain there won't be more, as this is an ongoing event," she stated.

Four of the individuals, three ladies and one man, have been significantly injured, Ms Fredriksson added.

Residents within the constructing informed broadcaster TV4 that the blast triggered large injury to the construction.

Media stories stated some residents standing on their balconies have been evacuated by hearth crews with ladders, whereas others tied sheets collectively to climb down.

For years Sweden has struggled to counter an increase in crime tied to gangs, with a spike in deadly shootings and bombings in an in any other case peaceable nation.

In 2020, police recorded 107 detonations within the nation of 10.3 million inhabitants, with one other 102 recorded incidents involving tried blasts or preparations.

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