Rasmus Paludan, the leader of Stram Kurs, a far-right Danish political party, has burned a copy of the Quran in front of the Russian embassy in Copenhagen, as per Berlingske.
Paludan burning the holy book of Islam in Stockholm, 21 January. Photo: Jonas Gratzer / Getty Images
Before that, Paludan also burned the holy book of Muslims in a mosque in the northwestern part of Copenhagen, and then in front of the Turkish embassy. According to the politician, by his act he demonstrated “disgust for the ideology and religion of Islam.”
About 50 policemen attended the event organised by Paludan, but no one was detained.
“Public mockery of believers’ feelings organised neglected by the Danish authorities is not a manifestation of freedom of speech and democracy, but a gross and ignorant provocation aiming to incite inter-religious hatred and inter-civilization conflict,” the Russian embassy commented on the incident.
In an interview with the Swedish daily Aftonbladet, Paludan said he intended to burn the Koran every Friday until Turkish President Recep Erdoğan supported Sweden’s NATO membership bid. He also promised to stop burning the holy book in front of the Turkish embassy should Erdoğan approve Sweden’s membership in the alliance.
Paludan, who is also a Swedish national, did a similar act in Stockholm last week, burning a copy of the Quran outside the Turkish embassy. After that, Turkey cancelled the visit of the Swedish Defence Minister to Ankara.
Erdoğan said the next day that Sweden should not expect Turkey to support its bid to join NATO. He called the action a “vile act” and an “insult” to those who respect human rights and freedoms. “If Sweden is so supportive of members of a terrorist organisation and enemies of Islam, we advise them to entrust them with the defence of their country,” Erdogan said.