Religious conflicts on the increase in Sweden


Wednesday, 10 August 2011
Sweden is one of the ten countries in the world where social conflicts with the religious connection are increasing the most. This comes from a new study carried out by an American organisation.

The riots in Rosengard, Malm� in 2008 and increased number of hate crimes against Muslims are among the reasons.
The American organisation, the Pew Research Centre has investigated the development of religious conflict and oppression in the world between 2006 and 2009. Sweden stands out as a country where such conflict is increasing the most.

The pews index for Sweden shift from one which is one of the most peaceful countries in the world to move to the middle of the global scale, with an index increasing from 1.2 to 2.3 between 2008 and 2009.  By comparison, Finland stood at 0.6 and Norway 1.3.


The increase is in accordance with the report on "increasing hostility between the overall population and the growing Muslim minority." As examples of conflicts with religious backgrounds, Pew includes the riots in Malm� district Rosengard 2008, sparked by the evacuation of a basement mosque. Pew also refers to a report by the Swedish Council for crime prevention on the increased number of hate crimes against Muslims, and also data on the increase of anti-Semitism in Malmo.

Viewed over the whole world, there is the increase of both religious violence and religious oppression. As for violence, Iraq is worse, with index of 9.0, while the worst oppression is in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Uzbekistan.

The survey covers the period until 2009, when Hosni Mubarak was still the ruled of Egypt, and in particular the Muslim Brotherhood was banned.

The report is based on data from 18 public sources, including UN, EU and several human rights organizations. Pew warns that one possible source of error is that  open democracies are likely to report incidents which took place in more closed countries. For example, Sweden is on a par with Libya in terms of religious conflict.
By Team

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