Quran burning: Turkey issues arrest warrant for Danish-Swedish extremist Rasmus Paludan

TT/The Local
TT/The Local - [email protected]
Quran burning: Turkey issues arrest warrant for Danish-Swedish extremist Rasmus Paludan
Rasmus Paludan at his protest near the Turkish embassy in Stockholm in January. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Turkey has issued an arrest warrant for far-right extremist Rasmus Paludan for setting a copy of the Quran on fire in Stockholm in January, reports state news agency Anadolu.


Paludan sparked anger in Turkey when he burned a copy of the holy book of Islam near the Turkish embassy in Stockholm on January 21st this year, prompting Ankara to pull out of Nato talks.

Ankara's chief public prosecutor launched an investigation into Paludan on allegations of "publicly insulting the religious values" and on Friday the Anadolu Agency reported that a Turkish court had issued a warrant for Paludan's arrest in order for the chief public prosecutor to question him.

Paludan told Swedish tabloid Expressen that he had not broken Swedish law.

"I have no plans to go to Turkey," he said.

A Swedish prosecutor dropped an investigation into Paludan over alleged hate crimes in connection with the January burning, telling DN at the time that the act "targeted a symbol of the religion and not the group [of Muslims] itself, even if people are offended. That distinction is important".


Paludan is the leader of far-right Danish party Stram Kurs. During Easter 2022 he visited – or announced plans to visit – several Swedish cities to burn copies of the Quran in public, which sparked riots and violence directed at the police, who had granted Paludan permits to demonstrate.

A Swedish investigation into hate crimes, or specifically so-called agitation against a national or ethnic group, in connection with Paludan's burning of the Quran in Malmö in 2022 is still ongoing.

Sweden's constitution protects the right to demonstrate and a permit may only be denied if there are concrete suspicions that a demonstration could pose a significant threat to security or public order.

In 2020 police tried to ban Paludan from entering Sweden. However, after it emerged that he had the right to Swedish citizenship through his Swedish father, police were forced to retract the ban.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also