Operation Frostbite announced after wave of violent crime in S. Sweden

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STOCKHOLM, Nov. 11 (Xinhua) -- Swedish police on Monday announced "Operation Frostbite", a special temporary task force created to respond to a recent wave of violent crime, Swedish news SVT reported.

Operation Frostbite takes aim at four targets believed to be the drivers of a spate of violent attacks, including explosions and shootings, the most recent of which led to the death of a 15-year-old boy, SVT said.

"We have seen a weekend in Malmo that is unacceptable, with execution-like murder," said Mats Lofving, head of the police's National Operations Department (NOA), at a press conference held on Monday.

"Special national incidents" can be designated to help police deal with sudden, unexpected issues by allocating extra resources. Previous "special national incidents" have been called for the terrorist attack in Stockholm in 2017 and the unprecedented wildfires in 2018.

Carina Persson, police chief of the southern Swedish region of Skane, provided background to the announcement during Monday's press conference.

"We have two violent weekends behind us, with explosions and murders. Our thoughts go out to the relatives and parents who are suffering through their worst nightmare but also to the Malmo residents who feel insecure in their city," said Persson.

On Saturday night, two teenage boys were hospitalized with severe gunshot injuries following a shooting at Mollevangstorget in Malmo. One of the boys, who was 15 years old, later died from his injuries.

The other boy, also 15 years old, has life-threatening injuries and is in a serious but stable condition. He is anesthetized and has so far not been able to be questioned.

Both teenagers who were shot "were known to police, despite their young age," said Malmo police chief Stefan Sinteus at the press conference.

An explosion which occurred six minutes before the shooting was probably a diversionary maneuver, explained Sinteus. Two perpetrators are believed to have travelled by bicycle to the pizzeria where they then shot at the boys.

As yet, no arrests have been made over the shooting, but police press officer Ewa-Gunn Westford told SVT that police are examining a large amount of evidence.

"We have a large number of cameras in the area, and also witness statements and the like, which we will look at now," Westford said.

The special task force will work on urgent investigations as well as long-term measures to prevent similar violent crimes in the future. Enditem

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