Desecration of the Koran: Algeria summons Danish and Swedish diplomatic representatives

Algiers announced on Monday that it had summoned the diplomatic representatives of Denmark and Sweden to protest the recent desecrations of the Koran in Copenhagen and Stockholm.

Algeria criticizes the recent desecrations of the Koran in Copenhagen and Stockholm. “Following the repetition of incidents of burning and desecration of the Holy Koran in Copenhagen and Stockholm, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday summoned the Danish ambassador and charge d’affaires at the Swedish Embassy in Algeria to inform them of Algeria’s official protest,” said a press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs published on Monday, July 24.

Algiers also expressed “its firm condemnation of these immoral and uncivil acts that target everything that is sacred to Muslims everywhere in the world,” according to the press release, stressing that it has been “brought to the attention of diplomats that such acts, due to their appalling and disgusting nature, in no way fall within the scope of freedom of expression, as those who defend and benefit from those who defend and profit from wrong.”

Algeria called on Denmark and Sweden to “take all necessary measures to prevent the repetition of such actions, hated by all monotheistic religions, international laws and customs”.

“These reprehensible actions, contrary to the values ​​of tolerance and coexistence, are likely to rekindle hatred and fuel Islamophobia,” the statement concluded.

Demonstrations in Baghdad

Sweden was the target of large protests last week in Baghdad after two events in Stockholm to desecrate the Koran.

The instigator of the desecrations, Salwan Momika, an Iraqi refugee, had set fire to pages of the book in late June before trampling and tearing it to pieces last Thursday in the Swedish capital.

In response to the permission given by the Swedish police for this demonstration, supporters of the influential Iraqi religious leader Moqtada al-Sadr invaded and set fire to the Swedish embassy in Baghdad shortly before dawn on Thursday. Baghdad also ordered the expulsion of Sweden’s ambassador to Iraq and announced the suspension of Swedish telecommunications equipment giant Ericsson’s license in the country.

On Friday, Stockholm announced the repatriation of staff from its embassy in Iraq for security reasons. The day before, the head of Swedish diplomacy Tobias Billström had condemned an “unacceptable attack” and confirmed that the Iraqi authorities had “failed (their) obligation” to protect the Swedish diplomatic mission.

Referring to the desecration of the Koran, Tobias Billström had also criticized an “offensive and disrespectful act”.

On Saturday, a new demonstration took place overnight in Baghdad following reports of yet another desecration of the Koran in Denmark. On Facebook, the far-right Danske Patrioter movement posted a video of a man apparently burning a Koran and trampling on an Iraqi flag.

The Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs has condemned the “burning of the Koran”, a “shameful” and “provocative act which hurts many people”.


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