Sweden’s Deputy Prime Minister has come under fire after branding the September 11 terror attacks ‘accidents’.
Åsa Romson made the comments during an interview on Tuesday, regarding the recent resignation of Sweden’s Minister for Housing and IT after he compared Israel to Nazi Germany.
Romson, 44, of coalition partner the Green Party, commended Mehmet Kaplan on his work with young Muslims during ‘tough situations like at the 11 September accidents’.
Kaplan, also of the Green Party, resigned Monday after likening Israel’s treatment of Palestinians to the persecution of Jews in by the Nazis before and during the Second World War.
Romson said: ‘He [Kaplan] has been chairman for Swedish Young Muslims in tough situations like around the September 11 accidents and similar.’
The September 11 attacks, also referred to as 9/11, were the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil in modern history.
Islamist terrorist network Al-Qaeda launched four co-ordinated attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, claiming the lives of 2,996 people (including the 19 hijackers).
Shortly after her interview on SVT on Tuesday morning, debate exploded on social networks, with the Deputy PM becoming the top trending topic on Twitter in the Scandinavian nation.
While some online commentators have settled for criticising her comments, others have called for her resignation.
Romson later defended her comment, saying: ‘The “accident” [of 9/11] is that we ended up with a very harsh debate on integration and how society grows with different religions side by side, and the discrimination that followed.’
This is only the most recent controversial branding to come from the gaffe-prone Swedish Deputy Prime Minister
Hours after the attacks in Paris on November 13, where 130 people were killed and 352 injured by ISIS terrorists, Romson tweeted: The very serious events in Paris right now can obstruct the climate change summit in December when more than 100 heads of state have planned on taking part.’
Last May, she faced international criticism after comparing the situation in the Mediterranean in the wake of the European migration crisis to World War II Nazi death camps.
Speaking during a live party leader debate Romson said: ‘We are turning the Mediterranean into the new Auschwitz.’
About 1.1 million people, mostly Jews, were killed in Auschwitz during the Second World War.
Romson, one of two leaders of the Swedish Green Party, has been Minister for the Environment and Deputy Prime Minister since her party was elected to govern in a coalition with the Social Democrats in 2014.