Today, around 120,000 Syriac Christians reside in Sweden. While many of them fled genocide in the Middle East, attacks against their churches and threats against their organisations are still not uncommon.
A recent Facebook post by the Syriac National Federation has detailed expletive-loaded threats it received from speakers of Arabic.
According to the federation’s spokesperson, this is not the first time such an incident has occurred. Most often, he said, the callers speak either Swedish with a thick Middle Eastern accent or even Arabic.
The police, however, chose not to investigate the matter, explaining that obscene language is not illegal.
“As soon as something happens in the Middle East or we are somehow visible in the media, we get these calls, so we are used to this.”
“At one point they say they will do the same to us in Sweden as they did in the Middle East. A genocide has been carried out in the Middle East against Christians. We have fled these groupings to Sweden, but they have caught up with us here”, the spokesperson said.
The Syriac National Federation has repeatedly turned to the authorities, but found no understanding, except among the Christian Democrats.
According to Samhällsnytt, there is a widespread feeling of resignation among Syriacs in Sweden amid concerns over the future of the rule of law and the state’s ability to protect people and prosecute crimes.
“We expect some fucking civil war between different groups unless someone puts their foot down. The people who did terrible acts in the Middle East, they are here now… and no one seems to care”, the spokesperson concluded.
Syriac churches in Sweden have witnessed a series of bomb and arson attacks, such as the Saint Afrem church in Södertälje and the Saint Mary church in Norrköping.
The incidents have caused strong reactions in the Syriac circles. While some argued that the time was ripe to leave Sweden if the state is unable to protect all its citizens, others suggested to get “a police force of our own” in the comments.