Stockholm police defuse bomb near exiled Iranian singer’s concert hall

Stockholm police defused explosive devices at around the same time and place a well-known Iranian artist and dissident was performing a concert, authorities confirmed on Monday.

The bomb squad was called after a bag full of explosives was found at an open-air festival in Stockholm the same evening that Ebrahim Hamedi, who goes by the stage name Ebi, gave the last concert of the festival, Reuters reported. Police then opened a preliminary investigation, although they did not provide details of an alleged perpetrator or motive. (RELATED: A Swedish court has overturned the deportation sentence of a Palestinian who tried to burn down a synagogue)

“The bomb disposal team neutralized the device at the scene,” police said in a statement after conducting a forensic examination on Monday morning, adding that it “contained an explosive charge,” Reuters reported.

Kungstradgarden, the park where the bag was found, served as the venue for the Stockholm Culture Festival from August 17-21, just 180 meters from where Ebi carried out the last event of the festival on Sunday evening, according to data from Google Maps.

“Only after a full examination at the National Forensic Center will we be able to say whether the dangerous object was functional,” Norrmalm District Police Chief Erik Akerlund said. according at Reuters.

Ebi went into exile after the regime that came to power following the 1979 Islamic Revolution banned the style of music he performs, the Toronto Star reported.

Iranian singer Ebi Hamedi sings at the Maraya concert Hall during the Tantora festival, in al-Ula, Saudi Arabia March 6, 2020. REUTERS/Ahmed Yosri

The bomb threat comes just weeks after a rogue actor attempted to murder author Salman Rushdie, whose book, ‘The Satanic Verses’, has been charged with blasphemy by the Iranian regime. Iranian Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had reiterated a religious order in 2019 calling for Rushdie’s murder.

“Currently there is no suspicion that this is a terrorism-related crime,” Akerlund said, according to Reuters, citing the daily Dagens Nyheter.

Sweden has raised the country’s terrorism threat level to three, or “raisedon a scale of five in 2010 after reports of possible attacks by domestic terrorist groups, CNN reported. It has remained high since, according to Reuters.

In 2017, an Islamic State sympathizer drove a truck into pedestrians near Kungstradgarden, killing five people, in what Sweden immediately called a terror attack, The Associated Press reported. The Uzbek attacker said during his trial that he hoped to punish Sweden for supporting the campaign against ISIS, Reuters reported.

Swedish counter-terrorism forces have prevented several more attacks since, according to Reuters. Sweden has also struggled with gang violence and has more shooting deaths relative to the size of its population than almost any other European country.

The Iranian and Swedish foreign ministries did not immediately respond to requests for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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