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Koran burning in Denmark incites Iraqi fury

Hundreds of Iraqis have protested against actual and attempted attacks on the Koran in Denmark and Sweden.

Hundreds of Iraqis have protested against actual and attempted attacks on the Koran in Denmark and Sweden. Photo: AAP

Two protesters have set fire to a copy of the Koran, Islam’s holy book, in front of the Iraqi embassy in the Danish capital risking a further deterioration of relations between the two countries.

The two protesters, who stomped on the Koran and set it alight in a tin foil tray next to the Iraqi flag, were from a group that calls itself “Danish Patriots” which held a similar demonstration last week.

On Friday, a man set fire to a book purported to be the Koran on a square across from the embassy and live-streamed it on the group’s Facebook platform.

The video shows the book burning in a tin foil tray next to the Iraqi flag on the ground, with two onlookers standing and talking next to it.

Danish Foreign Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen condemned it as an act of “stupidity” by a few individuals, telling national broadcaster DR at the time: “It is a disgraceful act to insult the religion of others.”

On Thursday, Iraq’s Swedish embassy was over-run and set alight in protest at a planned burning of the Koran in Stockholm.

Iraq condemned the attack on the Swedish embassy but also expelled the Swedish ambassador in protest at the planned burning of the Koran, the central text of Islam which Muslims believe to be a revelation from God.

Several thousand Iraqis demonstrated in Baghdad on Saturday over the burnings in the two Nordic countries, in a gathering called by ruling Iraqi parties and armed groups, many close to Iran.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Saturday that people who desecrate the Koran should face the “most severe punishment”.

-AAP

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