Russia condemns second ‘sacrilegious’ Koran-burning

Lazy eyes listen


Following the burning of copies of the Koran in front of a mosque, the Turkish embassy, and the Russian consulate in the Danish capital by an anti-Islam activist, the Russian embassy in Copenhagen denounced the “permissiveness” of Danish authorities on Friday. The mission stated that such actions serve solely as uninformed provocations and have nothing to do with freedom of speech.

The embassy issued a statement on Telegram stating that “the possibility for such actions should be fully shut out and their organizers should be brought to justice.” “Public ridicule of religious feelings…is not an expression of freedom of speech and democracy but a flagrant and ignorant provocation intended to arouse religious tensions and inter-civilizational strife,” according to the United Nations.

Rasmus Paludan, a Danish-Swedish attorney and leader of the Stram Kurs (Hard Line) party in Denmark, was the catalyst for the remark. On Friday, he set fire to a total of three copies of the Islamic holy book.

In “disgust at the doctrine and religion of Islam,” Paludan claimed he was acting in this way. The activist also told Sweden’s Aftonbladet newspaper that he would keep burning Korans in front of Ankara’s embassy in Copenhagen until Sweden is allowed to join NATO.

The Friday demonstration was labeled a “hate crime” by the Turkish embassy in Copenhagen. The Danish ambassador was also called in by authorities in Ankara.

The relationship between Denmark and Turkey “has been good, and this instance does not affect that,” according to Danish Foreign Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen. Authorities in the Nordic nation continued to advise Danes living in Turkey to take care and stay away from any protests or large-scale rallies.

A Koran was torched by Paludan last week in Stockholm. Sweden denounced the behavior but nonetheless allowed it, invoking the right to free expression. Russia also denounced the behavior.

Ankara was enraged by the choice, denouncing Stockholm’s lack of “respect,” and abruptly postponed a meeting of the trilateral mechanism with Sweden and Finland, putting those countries’ intentions to join NATO on hold.

The two Nordic countries must receive the unanimous approval of all present members of the military alliance in order to join. Turkey and Hungary have not yet supported the bids, despite the majority doing so.

Ankara had previously made its approval reliant on Stockholm and Helsinki easing their sanctions against Turkey. Ankara urged that Sweden and Finland stop hosting individuals who are deemed terrorists by the Turkish government.