Far-right protesters have desecrated copies of the Quran in The Netherlands and Sweden over the past few weeks.
Qatar condemned Danish authorities for allowing a far-right leader to burn a copy of the holy Quran, slamming it as a “vile incident” and a provocation targeting two billion Muslims globally.
“The State of Qatar condemns in the strongest terms the Danish authorities’ permission to burn copies of the Holy Quran in the capital, Copenhagen. It stresses that this vile incident is an act of incitement and a serious provocation to the feelings of more than two billion Muslims in the world,” the Qatari foreign ministry said on Saturday.
On Friday, shortly after the weekly prayer, far-right Danish leader Rasmus Paludan burned a copy of the Quran in front of a mosque in Denmark and the Turkish embassy in Copenhagen.
The latest incident is the third to occur in Europe over the past week. Paludan sparked outrage earlier this when he lit a copy of the Quran on fire outside the Turkish embassy in Sweden.
Days later, another far-right leader ripped up the copy of the Quran before burning it in The Netherlands.
In its recent statement, Qatar’s foreign ministry warned that such repeated violations of the holy scripture under the pretext of freedom of expression while fuelling “hatred and violence, threatens the values of peaceful coexistence.”
Qatar also said such violations reveal “abhorrent double standards”.
“The Ministry also warns that hate campaigns against Islam and the discourse of Islamophobia have witnessed a dangerous escalation with the continued systematic calls for the repeated targeting of Muslims in the world,” the statement added.
The ministry further renewed its support “for the values of tolerance and coexistence” in addition to “its keenness to establish the principles of international peace and security through dialogue and understanding.”
Meanwhile, Turkey responded to the latest incident move by summoning the Danish ambassador and called out Denmark for supporting a “hate crime”.
“Showing tolerance toward such heinous acts that offend the sensitivities of millions of people living in Europe threatens the practice of peaceful coexistence and provokes racist, xenophobic and anti-Muslim attacks,” the Turkish foreign ministry said.
In Copenhagen on Friday, Paludan also attempted to provoke Muslims by waving insulting material about the Prophet Muhammad under the protection of Danish police.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Khalid al-Subeyhi, a Palestinian mosque volunteer, said Paludan has previously carried out numerous provocative acts in front of other mosques.
In 2006, countries across the the Middle East boycotted Danish products at grocery stores after offensive cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad were published by Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, triggering mass protests around the Muslim world.
The latest spike in tensions between Europe and Turkey come as Sweden seeks Ankara’s support to join NATO. Turkey’s NATO membership grants it power to block applications for other states seeking to join the military alliance.
With tensions mounting, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned last week that Sweden “can no longer expect” its support to join the alliance.
“Those who allow such blasphemy in front of our embassy [in Stockholm] can no longer expect our support for their NATO membership,” Erdogan said in his first official comment since the Sweden incident.
“If you do not show respect to the religious beliefs of the Republic of Turkiye or Muslims, you will not receive any support for NATO [membership] from us,” the Turkish president added.
In Copenhagen, Paludan also vowed to continue his act of protest until Sweden is granted NATO membership.