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Sweden identifies truck attack suspect as Uzbek native, 39

Sweden identifies truck attack suspect as Uzbek native, 39

Update 1pm: The Stockholm truck attack suspect was an asylum seeker from Uzbekistan who had his application for Swedish residency rejected and was being sought for deportation, police said.

The Swedish police arrested a 39-year-old Uzbek man on Friday evening as the suspected driver of the truck, and the officials are now questioning seven more people.

Jonas Hysing, of Sweden's national police, added that authorities knew he was "sympathetic to extremist organisations, among them IS [the Islamic State group]".

According to the Swedish TT news agency on Sunday, the suspect applied for a residence permit in Sweden in 2014.

Police had been looking for him since the Nordic country's Migration Agency in December gave him four weeks to leave the country.

Police said Friday that the man taken into custody matched the description of a person of interest whose photo authorities had released earlier.

Flowers and candles are placed around stone lions near the department store following the suspected terror attack in central Stockholm, Sweden.

Hundreds of flower bouquets covered the steps leading down to the square next to where the truck ploughed into the Ahlens department store, with more piled up under boarded-up windows.

Friday's attack has deeply shocked the usually tranquil Scandinavian nation, which prides itself on its openness and tolerance.

Meanwhile, thousands of people gathered in central Stockholm later on Sunday for a vigil against terrorism and to honor the attack victims. Police said eight people remained hospitalized.

A 39-year-old Uzbek man was arrested as the suspected driver.

"Sweden is united", Stockholm resident Olsa Ekermann said to CNN.

The man, detained on Friday night on terrorism charges after the attack in the heart of the capital, appeared to have acted alone but "we still can not rule out that more people are involved", he said.

One of the wounded, an 83-year-old Romanian woman who was begging on the city's pedestrian Drottninggatan shopping street when the attack took place, said she was "surprised" that passersby helped her.

The Uzbek, detained on Friday night on suspicion of terrorist offences, appeared to have acted alone but police could not rule out that more people were involved, national police chief Dan Eliasson told reporters on Saturday. But Eliasson said there was "nothing to indicate we have the wrong person".

"Terrorists want us to be afraid, want us to change our behaviour, want us to not live our lives normally, but that is what we're going to do", Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said in response to the attack.

It was the second terror attack in Stockholm.

Authorities confirmed that the suspect was known to security services and described him as a "marginal character".


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