Summer street festivals are usually happy events where residents of diverse neighbourhoods turn out to promote their culture and enjoy the fun. But a recent event held in Malmo’s Rosengard district devolved into a street brawl as non-local activists were kicked out of the area by local residents.
Calling itself “Reclaim Rosengard”, the festival was supposed to be an organised protest-festival against the prevailing social conditions in this predominantly immigrant neighbourhood. But after just 15 minutes, the activists who were trying to raise awareness of Rosengard’s situation were violently kicked out by its residents.
Inger Leite, the municipal district representative of Rosengard, told the TT news agency: “There were quite a few who had gathered, not only young people, but also a lot of parents. I think that patience has run out among the residents of Rosengard.”
Leite was referring to the fact that the residents of Rosengard had made it very clear they didn’t want outsiders coming into their neighbourhood trying to speak out on their behalf. Since the activists were denied their right to hold the street party, they gathered at a nearby petrol station and began hurling rocks, bottles and Molotov cocktails at passing police cars.
It’s little wonder that Rosengard’s residents didn’t want these people holding a protest party in their backyard. Fortunately no one was injured in the melee and no arrests were made.