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Danish Government Prepares Bill To Stop Burning Holy Books

People demonstrate against the desecration of the Quran in Denmark, in Sanaa, Yemen July 24, 2023.(photo credit: REUTERS/KHALED ABDULLAH)

Report from Denmark, the Danish capital on Friday says the Government is proposing legislation that would make it illegal to burn Holy Books in public places, part of the Nordic country’s effort to de-escalate tensions resulting from the act.

Denmark and Sweden have seen a string of protests in public in recent weeks where copies of the Quran have been burned or otherwise damaged, prompting outrage in Muslim nations which have demanded the Nordic governments put a stop to the burnings.

The government rejected protests by some Danish opposition parties that said banning Quran burnings would infringe on free speech.

“The government will propose legislation that prohibits the inappropriate handling of objects with essential religious significance for a religious community,” Justice Minister Peter Hummelgaard told a press conference.

“The proposal will thus make it punishable to, for example, in public burn a Quran, Bible or Torah,” he said.

“I fundamentally believe there are more civilized ways to express one’s views than burning things,” Hummelgaard said.

Danish Foreign Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen had in July said the government would seek to “find a legal tool” that would enable authorities to prevent the burning of Holy Books in front of other countries’ embassies in Denmark.

“Breaking the new law would be punishable by fines or up to two years in prison,” Hummelgaard said.

He did not say when he expects the Parliament to vote on the bill.

Neighboring Sweden has also reportedly said it is examining ways to legally stop such act. – JP

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