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Danish far-right leader burns Qurʾan in Sweden

27th May 2022
Danish far-right leader burns Qurʾan in Sweden

(Photo credit: News Øresund/Johan Wessma)

Nadine Osman

For the second time in two weeks, the controversial leader of the far-right Danish party, Stram Kurs (Hard Line), burned a copy of the Qurʾān.

Around 100 police officers, as well as 10 plainclothes officers from the Swedish intelligence agency SAPO, accompanied Rasmus Paludan, 40, to protect him against counter-demonstrators on May 12. Two weeks earlier, on April 30, Paludan took to social media to announce that he burned the Islamic holy book in front of Raslatt Mosque in Sweden’s southern city of Jönköping on April 30, despite Swedish police not allowing it.

A video captured the moment Paludan was chased by a group of Muslims as he sped away in his SUV.
Swedish police rejected Paludan’s application for permission for a demonstration to burn the Qurʾān on May 1, coinciding with World Labour Day across Sweden.

Meanwhile, a group of people in Malmö protested Paludan’s provocation of burning the Holy Qurʾān in various Swedish cities during the Easter holiday. Addressing protestors, Turkish-born politician Mikail Yüksel, who founded the Party of Different Colours (Nyans) in Sweden, called to stop Paludan’s provocations. The previous week, about 500 people attended the protest organised by Nyans in front of the country’s parliament.

On April 14, Paludan burned a copy of the Qurʾān in Linköping and during future rallies. Riots broke out in the cities of Malmö, Norrköping, and Linköping, and Stockholm, leaving 125 police vehicles damaged and 34 injured, while 13 people were detained.

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