Officials in Sweden have been forced to cancel their annual Bravalla Festival next year after 11 cases of sexual abuse and one rape of a 15-year-old girl were reported at the festival, which ended yesterday.
The three-day festival, which started in 2013, draws about 40,000 to listen to various music acts like Kanye West, Iron Maiden and Robbie Williams
But – according to concert organizers – the event will not return in 2018. They said despite their attempts to keep people safe, there were almost a dozen cases of sexual assault, including one rape, Fox News reports.
“Words cannot describe how incredibly sad we are about this, and we most seriously regret and condemn this. This is not f**king okay. We do not accept this at our festival,” a festival representative wrote.
The rape that was reported involved a 15-year-old girl who was assaulted by a man in the middle of a crowd who stood by and let it happen.
They should have known this would happen. One year ago, five rapes and a “number” of sexual assaults were reported at the same festival.
This year, officials tightened security, installed more video-surveillance technology and had more officers patrolling the venue – to no avail.
Last year, the popular band Mumford and Sons headlined the festival. They said after the chaos at the last concert that they would be boycotting the festival until there were guarantees that festival-goers would be safe.
“I’ve had enough. Violence kills the festival experience, the love of music and, above all, people are injured. One is too much,” says Folkert Koopmans, the founder of the festival, which is Sweden’s largest music festival.
There are no reports yet on who the suspects in the rapes and sexual assaults are, but Sweden has been inundated by a flood of rapes and sexual assaults since they permitted refugees into their country in 2015. One study concludes that 92 percent of all violent sexual assaults and virtually all sexual assaults where the perpetrator and the victim are strangers to each other are committed by “non-citizens,” meaning migrants and refugees.