Sweden condemns burning of Quran as 'Islamophobic'
The Swedish government condemns the burning of the Holy Quran after having green lit the protest and burning of the Holy Quran under the pretext of free speech.
The Swedish government dubbed, on Sunday, the burning of the Holy Quran as an "Islamophobic" act following widespread condemnation from leaders of the Islamic world.
While on Sunday the Swedish government stated that it "fully understands that the Islamophobic acts committed by individuals at demonstrations in Sweden can be offensive to Muslims," adding that they "strongly condemn these acts, which in no way reflect the views of the Swedish government," the same country had previously greenlit the burning of the Holy Quran under the pretext of freedom of speech.
The condemnation came after the Saudi-based Organization of Islamic Cooperation, a 57-member body, called for concerted action to prevent future Quran burnings on Sunday, only days after a copy was set ablaze outside a Stockholm mosque during Islamic holidays.
The organization met in Jeddah in response to an Iraqi citizen residing in Sweden, Salwan Momika, 37, trampling on the Islamic holy book and lighting some pages on fire.
It happened to coincide with the beginning of the Eid al-Adha celebration and the end of the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, inciting outrage throughout the Muslim world.
According to a statement issued following the "extraordinary" meeting on Sunday, the OIC asked member nations to "take unified and collective measures to prevent the recurrence of incidents of desecration of the" Quran.
Sweden's ambassadors have been called in protest by countries such as Iraq, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Iran, and Morocco.
In turn, the Swedish Foreign Ministry said "The burning of the Koran, or any other holy text, is an offensive and disrespectful act and a clear provocation. Expressions of racism, xenophobia and related intolerance have no place in Sweden or in Europe."
On June 28, the Swedish police granted Salwan Momika a permit, grounded in the "constitutionally protected right to freedom", to protest and burn the Holy Book, but the authorities later stated that an investigation has been opened regarding the "agitation against an ethnic group."