Stockholm is on edge tonight after a mid-afternoon vehicle attack on a busy downtown shopping district that Prime Minister Stefan Löfven quickly branded a terrorist attack on Sweden.
At least four people were killed and 15 injured after an attacker drove a truck down Drottninggatan street, sending pedestrians diving into shops for cover. The Spendrups brewery truck had been stolen earlier in the day, the company said; witnesses said the driver didn’t seem experienced behind the wheel of the truck.
— Nivo (@Nivodius) April 7, 2017
The Local newspaper in Stockholm said there had been reports of shots fired near the Åhlens City department store, which the truck ran into, and in the city’s Fridhemsplan district, but police hadn’t confirmed either report.
The U.S. Embassy in Stockholm recommended that U.S. citizens in Sweden “avoid unnecessary travel at this time.”
The city’s subway and bus system was temporarily shut down. “Be aware that it will be difficult to move around the city,” continued the message. “…Review your personal security plans, remain aware of your surroundings, including local events, and monitor local news stations for updates. Be vigilant and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security.”
According to the Aftonbladet newspaper, a man in custody was stopped for unspecified suspicious demeanor. Sources told the paper that the man had confessed to driving the truck and had minor injuries from the truck crash. Police were also open to the possibility more people could have been involved.
Löfven ordered tighter border controls effective immediately.
“Terrorists want us to be afraid…to not live our lives normally, but that is what we are going to do,” the prime minister said at a press conference. “Terrorists can never defeat Sweden, never.”