Swedish Police Try To Justify Arrest Of Woman Who Attempted To Prevent Quran Burning In Stockholm

Image of a holy Muslim Quran.

Image of a holy Muslim Quran. Credit: Tanya Stolyarevskaya/Shutterstock.com

A woman who attempted to stop the public burning of a Quran outside the Iranian embassy in Stockholm last week was arrested by Swedish police.

In the latest of a series of anti-Islam protests in Sweden, an Iraqi refugee who had already previously desecrated copies of the holy book set fire to another one in the capital city.

Video footage posted on the Intel Republic telegram channel showed Salwan Momika preparing to carry out his action when a woman rushed towards him holding a fire extinguisher before spraying him with its contents. She was quickly intercepted by police officers who subsequently detained her.

The unidentified female was held on suspicion of disturbing public order and of violence against a police officer according to police spokesperson, Towe Hagg, as reported by middleastmonitor.com.

However, her arrest has sparked debate over Sweden’s claim of protecting freedom of speech and expression. In an effort to justify granting permission for these book burnings, the government said that prohibiting such things would go against the rights of freedom of speech and expression in the country.

Sweden is not the only country to have experienced these Quran burnings. Similar events have also recently taken place in Germany and Denmark, which have led to protests in Muslim nations globally.

The terror threat level was increased in Sweden

As a result, Charlotte von Essen the chief of Säpo, raised the terror threat level last week to four on a scale of five, the second-highest in Sweden for the first time since 2015.

This came shortly after a media outlet linked to the militant group al-Qaeda urged violent retribution against Sweden in a post on Telegram.

Last Friday, August 18, citing national security concerns, the authorities announced that it had started an enquiry into the legalities surrounding the possible future rejection of permits when applications were presented for book burnings.

This could eventually see a possible change to the Public Order Act, according to newseu.cgtn.com. It also revealed that preliminary hate speech charges had been filed against Momika.

Gunnar Strommer, the Justice Minister, explained that the enquiry would study how Norway, France, and the Netherlands all employed: ‘greater scope for including security in this type of assessment’ while also allowing extensive freedom of speech.

The Iranian embassy in Stockholm released a statement

In a statement last Friday, the Iranian embassy in Stockholm insisted that: ‘Insulting the Holy Quran and other holy scriptures is condemned’.

It questioned the validity of Sweden’s attempt to justify allowing the burnings to take place. Such actions were more a strategy employed by external forces with the aim of harming Stockholm’s relations with Iran and other Muslim-majority nations it added.

‘Accordingly, the Swedish government is firmly expected to stop this horrible process of insulting the Holy Quran in order to preserve Sweden’s position and good image and also to alleviate the suffering caused in the Islamic world and the entire world as a whole’, the embassy wrote.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com