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Fazl demands to recall ambassador to Sweden

ISLAMABAD, JUL 21 (DNA) — Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazl) chairman Maulana Fazlur Rehman on Friday demanded Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to recall Pakistan ambassador to Sweden ‘in protest’ against the desecration of Holy Quran.

The Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) president made this demand during a telephonic conversation with PM Shehbaz Sharif. During the conversation, Maulana Fazl noted that all Muslim nations, including Pakistan, should recall their ambassadors from Sweden.

The prime minister and JUI-F chairman agreed on ‘strict action’ from Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC), saying that the body should take notice of the ‘heinous and impure act of hurting Muslims’ by continuous planning.

He demanded PM Shehbaz Sharif to issue directives to Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) to recall its ambassador to Sweden. It is pertinent to mention here that Iraq – a day earlier – expelled the Swedish ambassador in protest at a planned desecration of Holy Quran in Stockholm that had prompted hundreds of protesters to storm and set alight the Swedish embassy.

An Iraqi government statement added that Baghdad was also recalling its charge d’affaires in Sweden, and Iraq’s state news agency reported that Iraq had suspended the working permit of Sweden’s Ericsson on Iraqi soil.

Protesters in Sweden had applied for and received permission from Swedish police to desecrate the Quran outside the Iraqi embassy on Thursday. Earlier, a man desecrated the Holy Quran in Sweden’s capital Stockholm last week, resulting in strong condemnation from several states, including Pakistan, Turkiye, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Iraq and Iran.

Sweden’s government also condemned burning of Quran outside Stockholm’s main mosque, calling it an “Islamophobic” act. “The Swedish Government fully understands that the Islamophobic acts committed by individuals at demonstrations in Sweden can be offensive to Muslims,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

“We strongly condemn these acts, which in no way reflect the views of the Swedish government,” it added. The condemnation came in response to a call for collective measures to avoid future Quran burnings from the Saudi-based Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

The 57-member body met at its Jeddah headquarters to respond to Wednesday’s incident in which an Iraqi citizen living in Sweden, Salwan Momika, 37, set several pages of Quran alight. — DNA

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