Italian populist Interior Minister Matteo Salvini took to Twitter this weekend to comment on an Italian television programme on Swedish migrant areas, saying he did not want Italy to become like Sweden.

Mr Salvini reacted to the programme Tg2, broadcast on national broadcaster RAI, that examined highly migrant-populated areas in Sweden and claimed that entire neighbourhoods were essentially ruled by Sharia.

The programme drew strongly negative reactions from the Swedish embassy in Italy, according to a report from Italian newspaper Il Giornale.

In his tweet, posted on Saturday, the Deputy Prime Minsiter Salvini said, “We don’t want to end up like Sweden, this is not integration! NO TO EURABIA. Oriana, look at us from up there” — a reference to the late Italian journalist Oriana Fallaci, who became well known for her anti-Islamisation views through her books The Rage and the Pride and The Force of Reason.

Following the airing of the programme, The Swedish embassy pushed back, claiming “There are no ‘no go zones’ in Sweden. As in most large cities, there are socially vulnerable areas where, contrary to what is stated in the service, police presence has been strengthened in recent years.”

“We also wish to clarify that Swedish law is applied throughout Sweden throughout the country and the law is the same for everyone,” the embassy insisted.

While the Swedish government has consistently denied the existence of no go zone, preferring to label them “vulnerable areas”, there have been reports of heavily migrant-populated neighbourhoods where local Muslim men attempt to enforce Sharia and Islamic morality codes.

Last year, the Swedish centre-right Moderate Party specifically addressed the issue, saying that they wanted to see so-called “morality police” in no go zones arrested and arguing that they were increasing the problem of so-called honour culture and thereby infringing on the freedoms of women and children.

While police presence has been increased in some no go zones, many police officers have been attacked, often by youths, while out responding to emergency calls. Last year in Malmö a police station in a vulnerable area was even subjected to an explosives attack.

The Stockholm suburb of Rinkeby is one of the most notorious no go zones in Sweden and police have made attempts to strengthen their presence by building a new police station, but have found it hard going after construction workers refused to build in the area because of fears of being attacked.

The fears were confirmed last year when masked men rammed the gate of the construction site, attacked a security guard, and then proceeded to set the car they had used to break in on fire.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)
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