October 20, 2015
On Wednesday, a report surfaced about an Assyrian family in Sweden who found the graffiti that reads "Convert or Die" on the wall of their Gothenburg pizzeria. The said family is among those who have fled Syria to escape the persecution of Christians at the hands of Islamic extremists, according to BizPac Review (BPR).
"Imagine yourself having fled from persecution in a country and then to find yourself staying next door to ISIS sympathizers here in Sweden," BPR quotes Gothenburg president Joseph Garis' statement to the Gotesborgs-Posten.
For pizza store owner Yusuf Asmar, their situation in the Assyrian district in Sweden is reminiscent of the time when Jews were being persecuted in Germany. During the 1930s, the Star of David was painted on the doors to identify Christians, Breitbart reports.
Being an Assyrian and a Christian, Asmar said he feels very uncomfortable with what is happening in the Swedish city because he knows he is one of those being targeted for persecution, the report adds.
Some buildings have also been marked with the Islamic glyph representing the letter "N" as a sign that there are followers of Nazareth (Jesus Christ) inside, the report explains.
Asmar's experience is now becoming more common in Gothenburg. The incident comes in the wake of Sweden's decision to provide asylum for Assyrians seeking safety in Northern Europe, in accordance with the country's open door immigration policy. But radical Islamists and ISIS sympathizers are taking advantage of that policy to enter Sweden, said Asmar.
For now, Swedish authorities are investigating the graffiti but are not classifying the act as a hate crime. However, police officer Bertil Claesson explained that it would be "almost impossible" to investigate the incident because they have no witnesses or evidence to work on.