Violence Erupts in Sweden After Quran Burnt by Far-Right Activists

The Quint
·2-min read

Violence broke out in southern Sweden on Friday, 28 August after far-right activists burnt Quran, police said on Saturday. At least 10 people were arrested and several police officers were left injured, AFP reported.

WHAT LED TO THE VIOLENCE

Far-right activists had burnt a Quran in Sweden’s Malmo city that led to an unrest as around 300 people began to protest, police said, Associated Press reported.

The protesters threw objects at police officers, burned tyres, set fire in Malmo late Friday.

The unrest followed the burning of Quran on Friday afternoon, that was done by far-right activists and shared online, according to TT news agency.

“We don’t have this under control but we are working actively to take control. We see a connection between what is happening now and what happened earlier today,” a police spokesperson said, Reuters reported

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LINK TO FAR-RIGHT ANTI- MUSLIM DANISH POLITICIAN

The AFP article further mentioned that Rasmus Paludan, leader of the far-right Danish anti-immigration party Hard Line, was supposed to reach Malmo to deliver a speech on Friday.

However, the authorities said that he had been banned from coming to Sweden for a period of two years and pre-empted his arrival. The leader was later held near Malmo.

"We suspect that he was going to break the law in Sweden. There was also a risk that his behaviour... would pose a threat to society," Calle Persson, spokesperson for the police in Malmo told AFP.

But this move did not stop his supporters who went ahead with conducting the rally. As many as six people were held for “inciting racial hatred” during the rally.

VIOLENCE SUBSIDES

The violence had reportedly subsided by Saturday.

"It's not right. But it wouldn't have happened if they hadn't burned the Quran," local resident Shahed told the SVT public broadcaster.

According to AFP, protesters ranging between 10 and 20 were arrested on Friday and “have all been released,” police spokesman Patric Fors said.

‘BURNING OF QURAN TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE’

As per AP, the head of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations expressed “unequivocal condemnation of the burning of the Quran by far-right extremists ... as despicable and totally unacceptable,” his spokesperson Nihal Saad said.

“Such deplorable acts perpetrated by hate-mongers ... and other radical groups incite violence and tear apart the fabric of our communities which are an affront to UN values and the alliance which works to strengthen inter-cultural and inter-religious dialogue,” the spokesperson added.

(With inputs from AFP, AP, Reuters)

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