Turkey issues arrest warrant for Quran burning


Northern Europe


Salwan Momika, an Iraqi man, sets a copy of the Koran on fire outside a mosque in Stockholm, Sweden. Photo EPA, Stefan Jerrevang

Turkey wants to arrest the Swedish-Danish man who burned a Quran in Stockholm in front of the Turkish embassy.

The Turkish press agency Anadolu writes that Rasmus Paludan is accused of “publicly insulting religious values.” Paludan himself is not impressed. He tells Expressen that he laughs about it. “I have no plans to travel to Turkey anyways.” Also, he lets Turkish President Erdogan know that if he would actually visit the country, he would abide by its national laws.

Paludan is not the only one that risks arrest in Turkey. The country has issued nine more warrants in relationship to Quran burnings in Stockholm, the Dutch daily Reformatorisch Dagblad writes.

Hot iron

Last Thursday, there would be another Quran burning. This time, the event would occur in front of the Iraqi embassy. However, people in Iraq became so angry that they set the Swedish embassy in their country on fire. No one was hurt, but the Swedish authorities withdrew the employees from the embassy back to Sweden.

In the end, the Quran burning of last Thursday was cancelled. The book was trampled but not set on fire.

Quran burnings have been a hot iron in the relations between Sweden and Turkey. Sweden considers such acts as covered by freedom of expression. However, Turkey strongly believes that insulting and provocating events should be banned.



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