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Swedish Embassy in Baghdad Stormed, Set on Fire Over Quran Burning

Photo/Reuters.

Early Thursday morning, hundreds of protesters stormed the Swedish Embassy in the centre of Baghdad, climbed its walls, and set it ablaze in retaliation for the expected Quran burning in Sweden.

The Swedish foreign ministry press office issued a statement denouncing the incident and emphasizing the importance of diplomatic missions being safeguarded by Iraqi authorities. The statement also stated that all embassy personnel in Baghdad were safe.

On June 28, a Quran copy was burned in downtown Stockholm as part of a protest that the police had authorized.

An immigrant from Iraq named Salwan Momika, 37, tore pages from the Quran and lit it on fire. Muslims worldwide celebrate Eid al-Adha on that day, one of Islam’s most important religious celebrations.

Later, the Swedish Foreign Ministry said that the country’s government denounced the “Islamophobia acts” carried out by individuals and did not represent the views of the Swedish authorities in any way.

A similar protest in front of the Iraqi embassy was permitted on July 19 by the Stockholm policy.