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Arab countries, groups strongly condemn Quran burning in Sweden

The Secretary General of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, Naif Falah al-Hajraf, in particular, warned that "this provocative act is directed against Muslims, offends their values"

CAIRO, January 23. /TASS/. Some Arab countries and organizations have condemned the recent burning of a copy of the Quran by extremists in Sweden.

The organizations included the League of Arab States, the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and the major Islamic learning institution, Al-Azhar Al-Sharif.

The Arab Parliament, the legislative body of the League of Arab States, on Sunday called on the international community to "shoulder its responsibilities and criminalize these totally and completely rejected acts, which contradict all human and moral values and principles, provoke Muslims, fuel feelings of hatred and violence, and aim to destabilize security and stability."

"The Arab Parliament called for the enactment of international laws and legislation that criminalizes insulting religious sanctities and provides the necessary protection for Muslims in practicing their religious rites on an equal footing with all other religions," the legislature said in a statement.

Foreign ministries of several Arab countries - including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Iraq and the UAE - also denounced the Quran-burning.

The Saturday’s burning of the holy book was carried out by Rasmus Paludan, leader of the far-right political party Hard Line. Paludan also criticized NATO, Turkey and its president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.