Russia condemns second ‘sacrilegious’ Quran burning — RT Russia and the former Soviet Union

Copies of the holy book were destroyed outside two diplomatic missions and a mosque in Denmark

The Russian Embassy in Copenhagen on Friday condemned what it described as “permissiveness” Danish authorities after an anti-Islam activist burned copies of the Koran outside a mosque, the Turkish embassy and the Russian consulate in the Danish capital. These types of actions have nothing to do with freedom of expression, but serve only as ignorant provocations, the mission said.

“The possibility of such actions must be completely ruled out and their organizers must be brought to justice,” the embassy said in a statement on Telegram. “The public mockery of religious sentiment…is not a manifestation of free speech and democracy, but a blatant and ignorant provocation aimed at stoking religious tensions and inter-civilizational conflict.”

The comment was spurred by the actions of Rasmus Paludan, a Danish-Swedish lawyer who leads the Stram Kurs (Hard Line) party in Denmark. He set fire to a total of three copies of the Islamic holy book on Friday.

Paludan said he did it in “distaste for the ideology and religion of Islam.” The activist also told Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet that he would continue to burn Qurans outside the Turkish diplomatic mission in the Danish capital until Ankara consents to Sweden joining NATO.

The Turkish Embassy in Copenhagen condemned Friday’s protest as a “hate crime”. Ankara authorities also summoned the Danish ambassador.

Danish Foreign Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen said his nation “has good relations with Türkiye, and this case does not change that.” Authorities in the Nordic state have consistently urged Danes in Turkey to exercise caution and avoid any demonstrations or mass gatherings.

Last week Paludan burned a Koran in Stockholm. Sweden condemned the action but allowed it anyway, citing freedom of speech. Russia also condemned the act.

The decision angered Ankara, which castigated the lack of “respect” and, in turn, indefinitely suspended a meeting of the trilateral mechanism with Sweden and Finland, leaving their NATO membership plans in limbo.

The two Nordic nations need the unanimous support of all current member states of the military bloc to join them. While most have backed the offers, Turkey and Hungary have yet to do so.

Ankara had previously made its consent conditional on the lifting of arms embargoes imposed in Stockholm and Helsinki on Turkey. Sweden and Finland should also stop harboring people considered terrorists by the Turkish authorities, Ankara demanded.

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