Bråvalla, Sweden’s largest music festival, has reportedly been canceled for next year after police were notified of 23 sexual assaults and four rapes at the 2017 festival.
The huge four-day festival, which counted headliners like The Killers and Ellie Goulding, took place in Östergötland. This was the same festival where five rapes and several sexual assaults were reported last year, which subsequently led Mumford and Sons to boycott the festival. This year’s ticket sales dropped to 45,000, compared to 52,000 sold in 2016.
“Certain men... apparently cannot behave. It’s a shame. We have therefore decided to cancel Bråvalla 2018,” festival organizers told the Guardian.
The festival reports come at a time in which Sweden’s rape culture has been especially scrutinized due to comments made by President Donald Trump and politician Nigel Farage connecting immigration in Sweden to rising rape rates. But while reported rapes in Sweden have risen over a ten-year period, this is largely due to new legislation that expands the definition of rape in Sweden and the strictness of the country’s legislation.
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“Willingness to report such offences also differs dramatically between countries,” reads a fact sheet created by the Swedish government. “A culture in which these crimes are talked about openly, and victims are not blamed, will also have more cases reported. Sweden has made a conscious effort to encourage women to report any offense.”
In response to the Bråvalla reports, the Swedish comedian Emma Knyckare joked on Twitter that Swedish women should have a women-only music festival until men learn to behave themselves. And after enough people reached out to contribute, Knyckare confirmed on her Instagram that she had officially begun planning the festival.