Former Swedish PM asks 'what has Trump been smoking?' as country ridicules President's attack claim

President says ‘look what's happening last night in Sweden’ as he alludes to past terror attacks in Europe

Sunday 19 February 2017 16:51 GMT
President Trump cites terrorist incident in Sweden that never happened

The former Prime Minister of Sweden has asked “what has Donald Trump been smoking?” after the President alluded to a mystery recent attack in the country.

Swedes reacted with general confusion after Mr Trump said "look what's happening last night in Sweden" after listing a series of past terror attacks in Europe, during a speech at a rally in Florida.

Aftonbladet newspaper, a Swedish tabloid, listed some events that had happened in the country on that night, including police chasing a drunk driver, a man being treated for severe burns and an avalanche warning.

And former Prime Minister Carl Bildt took to Twitter to express his confusion, saying: “Sweden? Terror attack? What has he been smoking? Questions abound.”

Although Mr Trump did not explicitly state there had been an attack in Sweden, he did mention a range of attacks immediately after talking about the country.

“Sweden. “They took in large numbers. They’re having problems like they never thought possible. You look at what’s happening in Brussels. You look at what’s happening all over the world. Take a look at Nice. Take a look at Paris,” Mr Trump said.

“We’ve allowed thousands and thousands of people into our country and there was no way to vet those people. There was no documentation. There was no nothing. So we’re going to keep our country safe.”

The comment also prompted widespread ridicule among social media users, much of it documented by Sweden's Aftonbladet.

Henrik Selin, the deputy director of the Swedish Institute, a state agency dedicated to promoting the country globally, said he was confused by the comments.

“I do not have a clue what he was referring to,” he told the New York Times.

“Obviously, this could be connected to the fact that there has been a lot of negative reporting about Sweden, since Sweden has taken in a lot of refugees.”

Sweden has a long history of welcoming refugees and accepted approximately 81,000 asylum seekers in 2014, 163,000 in 2015 and 29,000 in 2016.

Another 25,000 to 45,000 are expected in the country this year, according to the Swedish Migration Agency.

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