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Swedish Police Permit Demonstrators to Burn Holy Quran

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The police permit demonstrators to burn the Holy Quran on Eid al-Adha.

Swedish police on Wednesday granted permission to burn the holy Quran as part of a protest outside Stockholm’s main mosque, ahead of the Muslim’s three-day Eid Al-Adha holiday,

During the protest, the protest’s organiser plans to burn a copy of the Quran.

The security dangers involved with the burning, according to the police’s written judgement, did not rise to the legal standard for the request’s denial.

This clearance follows the police’s initial denial of permits for two prior demonstrations in Stockholm that also included Quran burnings, which was overturned by a Swedish appeals court.

A Quran burning outside Turkey’s embassy in January triggered significant protests, demands for a boycott of Swedish goods, and hampered Sweden’s application to join NATO. Before, the police had cited security concerns in this regard.

Due to Turkey’s assessment of insufficient action against Kurdish groups, it blocked Sweden’s NATO bid. Ankara notably protested to the police’s sanction of the January march.

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Police initially forbade proposals for demonstrations involving Quran burnings in front of the Turkish and Iraqi embassies in Stockholm. The appeals court later determined, nonetheless, that the police had made the wrong choice because there was no obvious connection between the security issues and the scheduled events.

The same person whose prior request had been denied has now made a request for the Wednesday demonstration. Salwan Momika, a 37-year-old man, stated in his application that he planned to desecrate and burn the Quran in front of the mosque to express his views on it.

The Swedish police have enlisted the assistance of extra personnel from throughout the nation to preserve order during the protest. Early on Wednesday, many police cars were seen close to the mosque.

Although criticising Quran burnings, several Swedish politicians have also vehemently defended the right to freedom of expression.