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Outrage as Holy Quran burnt in Stockholm with authorities’ permit

Protest in Stockholm was held Saturday against the decision by Sweden and Turkey to join NATO. Read More

Sunday January 22, 2023 11:26 AM, ummid.com with inputs from Agencies

Outrage as Holy Quran burnt in Stockholm with authorities’ permit

Stockholm: Muslims in a number of countries, including 57-member strong Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), has condemned the burning of Quran, Muslim Holy Book, in Stockholm with the permission of local authorities.

“In the strongest terms, the OIC condemns the vile act of burning the holy Quran by far-right activists today, 21st January 2023, in front of the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm, Sweden, and with the permission of the Swedish authorities”, Union of OIC News Agencies (UNA) quoted OIC Secretary-General as saying.

“The OIC warns that this provocative action, which is considered a hate crime and has been committed repeatedly by far-right extremists, targets Muslims, insults their sacred values, and serves as a further example of the alarming level reached by Islamophobia, hate, intolerance, and xenophobia”, the official media centre of OIC, a strong 57-member representative body of Islamic nations, said.

“OIC urges the Swedish authorities to take necessary measures against the perpetrators of this hate crime and calls for increased international efforts to prevent the re-occurrence of such acts and for solidarity to fight Islamophobia”, it said.


'Vile Act'

Turkey has also condemned the burning of a copy of the Muslim Holy Book, describing it as a "vile act".

Turkey, which had earlier appealed to Sweden to stop the protest, earlier called off a visit by Sweden's Defence Minister, Pal Jonson, saying the trip had "lost its significance and meaning".

"We condemn in the strongest possible terms the vile attack on our holy book ... Permitting this anti-Islam act, which targets Muslims and insults our sacred values, under the guise of freedom of expression is completely unacceptable," the Turkish Foreign Ministry said.


'Serious Provocation'

Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Salem Abdullah Al-Jaber Al-Sabah also condemned and denounced the burning of a copy of the Holy Quran in Stockholm.

"This hurts Muslims sentiments across the world and marks serious provocation", he said.

In a press statement, the minister called on the international community to shoulder responsibility by stopping such unacceptable acts and denouncing all forms of hatred and extremism, and bringing the perpetrators to accountability.

He also called for differentiating between politics and religion, promoting the values of dialogue, tolerance and peaceful coexistence among peoples and preventing any form of blasphemy of all divine religions.

Saudi Arabia has also denounced the Swedish authorities' allowing what it called "an extremist to burn a copy of the Holy Qur’an".

In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed the Kingdom's firm position that called for the importance to spread the values of dialogue, tolerance and coexistence, in addition to rejecting extremism and hatred.

'Political and Racist'

Protest in Stockholm was held against the decision by Sweden to join NATO for which it was seeking the support of Turkey. The local authorities had not only given the permission for the protest but also allowed the far-right Stram Kurs (Hard Line) party to burn the Holy Book of Muslims, believed to be word of Allah, the Almighty.

Masoud Kamali, a former special investigator in Sweden, told Anadolu that burning the Muslim holy book is a “political and racist message” aimed at Muslims that transcends to all European countries and beyond.

"This is a “political game", he said adding that the freedom of speech today is giving racist groups permission to attack migrants and Muslims, and enable them “to say whatever they want and make any action that they wish.”

He said that if a racist politician like Rasmus Pludan or anyone else was denied permission to burn Quran, it would not have damaged the freedom of speech.

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