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Rape threats against children in Swedish school: ‘She’s not Muslim enough’

At several schools in Malmö, children as young as six are beaten, threatened and sexually harassed by other students on a daily basis. One girl was reportedly threatened with rape because she wasn't considered "Muslim enough" by other students.

Published: November 21, 2016, 12:30 pm

    At several schools in Malmö, Sweden, children as young as six are beaten up and sexually harassed on a daily basis, reports local newspaper Sydsvenskan, following similar reports by other media. A recorded conversation shows that gym classes have occasionally been cancelled partly because school authorities have not been able to guarantee the safety of participating children, and because teachers didn’t feel safe themselves.

    According to Sydsvenskan, the learning environment at these schools is almost beyond description. Lessons are “chaotic”, fights between students are commonly filmed by other students who are egging the troublemakers on, “racist and homophobic remarks” are rampant, and much more.

    At Johannesskolan in particular, a group of around twenty parents are raising the alarm because of abuse and sexual harassment by other students. One of them, Arber Baqaj, says that his daughter is beaten up with fists on a daily basis. Another parent shows pictures of his six-year-old boy who is visibly bruised and explains that his son didn’t dare report the abuse to the teachers because the other boy threatened to kill him.

    A father, who wishes to remain anonymous for fear of his daughter’s safety, says that she has been abused for several years at the school. The family is Muslim, but his daughter’s assailants thinks she isn’t “Muslim enough,” he explains.

    “Boys are threatening to rape her. Say that their dads will fuck her. Call her a whore. Ask about her religion,” he says. “They don’t think she’s Muslim enough.”

    Johannesskolan is an elementary school which used to pride itself on its multiethnic makeup, even though, at least as early as 2006, it was singled out by the ruling Social Democrat party as one of the “disadvantaged” schools in need of extra government grants. Even before the migrant crisis last year, less than 25 percent of the students had Swedish as their first language, and 30 languages in total was spoken at the school.

    The situation is much the same in several of the schools in Malmö, such as Rörsjöskolan-Zenith and Augustenborgsskolan. After last year’s migrant crisis, Malmö schools were given an extra 12 million Euro to cope with the situation. Now, they may face heavy fines from the school inspection authority unless they rectify the situation – though how they are supposed to manage that is as elusive as ever.

    Nadja Kvist, one of the few parents with a Swedish-sounding name to come forward, explains that she is moving her daughter to another school after some boys beat her up and pulled down her trousers and panties. The relocation means that the girl’s grandmother will have to travel to pick her up from school every day.

    The principal of Johannesskolan, Maria Berben Lidén, says that she doesn’t share the parent’s dismal views of the environment at the school.

    “Definitely not. But there are conflicts, mostly in the younger age groups. We are working systematically against that,” she says. She also declared herself ignorant of all the specific incidences that had been brought forward by parents. “Our staff is supposed to handle conflicts. Of course, I myself also admonish students if I see anything happening,” she explained when the newspaper asked her about the alleged rape threats.

    Sweden’s Minister of Education, Gustav Fridolin, is famous for being a proponent of massive immigration, but has been facing increasing criticism for the education crisis in Sweden’s many “disadvantaged” areas.

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