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Türkiye summons Swedish ambassador over Stockholm’s permission for Quran burning

Türkiye on Friday summoned the Swedish ambassador to Ankara over Sweden's permission for a planned burning of the Quran, Islam's holy book, near the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm.

Staffan Herrstrom was told that Türkiye "strongly condemns this provocative act, which is clearly a hate crime, that Sweden's attitude is unacceptable, that Ankara expects the act not to be allowed, and insults to sacred values cannot be defended under the guise of democratic rights," the Turkish diplomatic sources said.

Türkiye warned Sweden that allowing propaganda activities that PKK-affiliated circles are preparing to carry out in the capital Stockholm on Saturday is a "clear violation" of the tripartite deal, the sources added.

Rasmus Paludan, the leader of the Danish far-right party Stram Kurs (Hard Line), was given permission to burn the Quran outside the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm, according to Stockholm police.

Meanwhile, Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billstrom said he was concerned that the demonstration risks further delaying Türkiye's ratification of Sweden's NATO bid. However, he added that it would be "very inappropriate" for him to call for a person not to be allowed to carry out a demonstration.

Last week, Türkiye called on Sweden to take steps against terror groups after a demonstration in Stockholm, where supporters of the PKK terrorist organization hung in effigy by the feet a figure of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and then uploaded footage of the provocation along with threats against Türkiye and Erdogan.

Sweden and Finland formally applied to join NATO last May, abandoning decades of military non-alignment, a decision spurred by Russia's war on Ukraine, which started on Feb. 24.

But Türkiye – a NATO member for more than 70 years – voiced objections, accusing the two countries of tolerating and even supporting terror groups, including the PKK and the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO).

Last June, Türkiye and the two Nordic countries signed a memorandum at a NATO summit to address Ankara's legitimate security concerns, paving the way for their eventual membership in the alliance.

Source: Anadolu Agency