Protesters attempt to storm Baghdad’s Inexperienced Zone over the burning of Quran and Iraqi flag in Denmark



BAGHDAD — Tons of of protesters tried to storm Baghdad’s closely fortified Inexperienced Zone, which homes overseas embassies and the seat of Iraq’s authorities, early Saturday following stories an ultranationalist group burned a replica of the Quran in entrance of the Iraqi Embassy in Copenhagen.

Safety forces pushed again protesters, who blocked the Jumhuriya bridge resulting in the Inexperienced Zone, stopping them from reaching the Danish Embassy.

The protest got here two days after individuals angered by the deliberate burning of the Islamic holy e book in Sweden stormed the Swedish Embassy in Baghdad. Protesters occupied the diplomatic publish for a number of hours, waving flags and indicators exhibiting the influential Iraqi Shiite cleric and political chief Muqtada al-Sadr, and setting a small hearth. The embassy workers had been evacuated a day earlier.

Hours later, Iraq’s prime minister lower diplomatic ties with Sweden in protest over the desecration of the Quran.

An Iraqi asylum-seeker who burned a replica of the Quran throughout an indication final month in Stockholm had threatened to do the identical factor once more Thursday however finally stopped wanting setting hearth to the e book. He did, nevertheless, kick and step on it, and did the identical with an Iraqi flag and a photograph of Sadr and of Iran’s supreme chief Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

On Friday afternoon, hundreds protested peacefully in Iraq and different Muslim-majority nations.

Additionally on Friday, in accordance with Danish media stories, members of the ultranationalist group Danske Patrioter burned a replica of the Quran and an Iraqi flag in entrance of the Iraqi Embassy in Copenhagen, livestreaming the motion on Fb.

Copenhagen police spokeswoman Trine Fisker instructed The Related Press that “a really small demonstration” with lower than 10 individuals came about Friday afternoon throughout the road from the Iraqi embassy and {that a} e book was burned.

“We have no idea what e book it was,” she mentioned. “Apparently they tried to burn the Iraqi flag and after that, any person stepped on it.”

Fisker mentioned the “political angle shouldn’t be for the police to remark” on, however the “occasion was peaceable … from a police perspective.”

The incident prompted the protests in Baghdad in a single day. Chanting in assist of Sadr and carrying photographs of the outstanding chief and the flag related along with his motion, together with the Iraqi flag, a whole bunch of protesters tried to enter the Inexperienced Zone and clashed with safety forces earlier than dispersing.

In an announcement on Saturday, the Iraqi Ministry of International Affairs condemned “in sturdy and repeated phrases, the incident of abuse in opposition to the Holy Quran and the flag of the Republic of Iraq in entrance of the Iraqi Embassy in Denmark.”

It referred to as the worldwide group “to face urgently and responsibly in the direction of these atrocities that violate social peace and coexistence around the globe.” the assertion learn.

One other protest is scheduled to happen in Baghdad at 6 pm.


Related Press author Abdulrahman Zeyad in Baghdad and Abby Sewell in Beirut contributed to this report. Tanner reported from Helsinki, Finland.

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