Police cordon turkish embassy sweden
Police cordon off the area outside the Turkish embassy in Stockholm, Sweden, Saturday Jan. 21, 2023. Image Credit: AP

Cairo: The six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) has condemned the burning of a copy of the Holy Quran by an extremist in Stockholm, Sweden, warning against provoking Muslims’ feelings.

The GCC said its Secretary General Nayef Al Hajraf has condemned the Swedish authorities for allowing an extremist to burn the Holy Quran in front of the Turkish embassy in Stockholm, which would fuel and provoke Muslims’ feelings around the world.

Al Hajraf confirmed the GCC’s firm position calling for the importance of “spreading the values of dialogue, tolerance and peaceful coexistence as well as rejecting hatred and extremism”.

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He urged the international community to shoulder responsibility to halt “such rejected acts”.

The GCC comprises the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar.

The UAE strongly condemned the act of the Quran burning by an extremist in front of the Turkish embassy in Stockholm, WAM reported.

In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation affirmed the UAE’s rejection of all practices aimed at destabilising security and stability in contravention of human and moral values and principles.

The ministry renewed its enduring call for renouncing hate speech and violence. The ministry underscored the need to respect religious symbols and avoid inciting hatred by insulting religions.

Moreover, the ministry reiterated the need to spread the values of tolerance and coexistence.

Saudi Arabia condemned Swedish authorities’ allowing the extremist to burn a copy of the Holy Quran and renewed its position calling for spreading values of dialogue, tolerance and coexistence, as well as rejecting radicalism and hatred.

Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and Qatar also condemned the burning act.

Secretary General of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation Hissein Brahim Taha, meanwhile, said he condemns in the strongest terms “the vile act” of burning the Holy Quran and called it “provocative action”.

An anti-immigrant politician from the far-right fringe on Saturday burned a copy of Islam’s holy book near the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm during protests against Turkey and Sweden’s bid to join NATO, Reuters reported.