Thirty-five asylum-seekers in Sweden have requested alternative accommodations because they believe the housing facility they were placed in is haunted, officials told the Associated Press.
The asylum-seekers began to believe that the facility is haunted by ghosts after being “spooked by flickering lights and noise in the plumbing system at the facility,” according to the AP.
Magnus Petersson, a local manager for the Swedish Migration Agency, which oversees the Grannaforsa facility, said that 35 of the 58 people living in the shelter came to the agency’s office on Tuesday “demanding to be relocated,” but “reluctantly returned” to the shelter later that day after being assured that there were no ghosts – and informed that no alternative housing was available.
“I know that in their faith there is a different view on spirituality,” Petersson told the AP. “We were responsive to them but somewhere you have to use your common sense and believe in science.”
Stefan Johansson, a co-owner of the facility, told the AP that it was built in the 19th century and previously housed German deserters during World War II.
Johansson said he believes that there is a rational explanation for the noises, such as the age of the building.
“It’s an old house and the doors maybe are a bit crooked,” he said. “Sometimes there are cracking noises in the pipes.”
He added that the flickering lights “were caused by glitches in electrical switches.”
“We have explained all this to them. How much of it they took in I don’t know,” Johansson said.
But some of the residents were not reassured.
Hamid Alojaili, a Syrian resident of the facility, told Smalandsposten, a local newspaper, that “we are sure” that the building is in fact haunted.
“Doors are getting reopened by themselves, and there is no one outside,” Alojaili said.
He added that he is considering staying in a tent because “it’s too dangerous to be there.”
According to the AP, over 150,000 asylum-seekers have entered Sweden this year. Most of the refugees are from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.