Gothenburg explosion: Suspect device may have caused blast at Swedish apartment block that injured 16, police say

An explosion at an apartment building in Gothenburg that injured 16 people may have been caused by a suspect device, Swedish police have said.

Officers looking at whether tenants were being targeted told local media they suspect something may have been placed inside, or just outside, the building in Sweden’s second-largest city.

It appears the explosion was “not of natural causes”, police spokesman Thomas Fuxborg said. A gas leak has been ruled out by the emergency services.

Something was “probably” placed at the site, Mr Fuxborg told a news conference.

The blast happened just before 5am local time. Four residents – three older women, and a man in his 50s – were seriously hurt.

Some people climbed on balconies and jumped as grey smoke billowed out of stairwells and windows, residents told local media.

“The whole apartment vibrated, the bed vibrated,” Lars Hulten told the Göteborg Tidning newspaper.

People “hung from balconies – there was one who fell”, he added.

Fires, which spread to several apartments, were still burning several hours later.

Another resident, Anja Almen, said there was “smoke everywhere, from every stairwell”, adding: “Fire trucks with ladders were pulling people from apartments.”

Sweden has been plagued by soaring gang crime in recent years, with rival groups using explosives and firearms to settle scores, the Reuters news agency said.

Earlier this year, it was reported that Sweden had one of the highest rates of gun violence in Europe, having previously had one of the lowest.

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