A 32-year-old Muslim man, who had planned to burn the Torah and Bible outside the Israeli Embassy in Stockholm in protest against the burning of Holy Quran in Sweden, has said he will not go ahead with his protest.
Although granted permission by the Stockholm police to stage a protest involving three individuals, the Swedish resident of Syrian origin clarified that his purpose was never to burn any books. Instead, he symbolically discarded a lighter by throwing it to the ground.
“I never intended to burn any books. As a Muslim, burning books is against our beliefs,” the man stated, as cited by broadcaster SVT, addressing the crowd that had gathered there to see the planned act of desecration.
The 32-year-old protester, identified as Ahmad, said the true objective of his protest was to shed light on the distinction between freedom of speech and the act of deliberately offending other ethnic groups.
Pakistan condemned the permission for public desecration of the Torah and Bible in Sweden, a press release by Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) said on Saturday.
It said that offensive acts of religious hatred cannot be condoned in the guise of freedom of expression and opinion.
As a religion of peace, Islam calls for respect for all religions, sacred personalities and holy scriptures. “In line with this Islamic ethos, Pakistan has always stressed the need to advance mutual respect, harmony and peaceful coexistence among religions, faiths, and cultures,” it said.
Pakistan called for the international community to condemn, with one voice, all such abhorrent acts of religious hatred, which hurt the sentiments of its followers and constitute deliberate incitement.
Similarly, the decision made by Swedish authorities was also condemned by the Israeli president and prime minister.
Israeli President Isaac Herzog expressed his deep sorrow upon witnessing the same fate befalling other holy books following the desecration of the Quran.
Pakistani rupee remains stable against US dollar in the open market on February 29, 2024 (Thursday).
In the open market, the US dollar was being quoted at 279.1 for buying and 282.35 for selling.
Euro currently stands at 303 for buying and 306 for selling while British Pound rate stands at 352 for buying, and 355.5 for selling.
UAE Dirham AED hovers at 76 whereas the Saudi Riyal saw slight increase, with new rates at 74.3.
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