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Iran expels Swedish ambassador over Quran burning following the protests at Swedish Embassy Iran
Representational image by Md Mahdi on Unsplash

Iran expels Swedish ambassador over Quran burning following the protests at Swedish Embassy

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 21 Jul 2023, 01:27 am

The Iraqi government spokesperson stated on Thursday that due to the permission of a Koran-burning protest in Stockholm, Iraq has directed the Swedish ambassador to leave and has decided to withdraw its envoy from the country.

Prime Minister Mohamed Shia al-Sudani "instructed the Swedish ambassador in Baghdad to leave Iraqi territory", his office said in a statement, reported AFP.

It said the decision was "prompted by the Swedish government's repeated permission for the burning of the holy Koran, insulting Islamic sanctities and the burning of the Iraqi flag".

Protests erupted in Iraq after an Iraqi national burned a Quran in Stockholm. Swedish police then granted a permit for a planned gathering, which further escalated tensions.

Although two men protested near the Iraqi Embassy in Stockholm, they did not burn the Quran. Iraq warned Sweden about potential diplomatic relations' cut if a Quran-burning protest was allowed in Stockholm.

In response to the attack on the Swedish Embassy in Baghdad, Sweden accused Iraqi authorities of failing to protect the mission. Iraqi Prime Minister ordered the expulsion of Sweden's ambassador and recalled the Iraqi chargé d'affaires.

The Swedish government, considering security concerns, may review rules around Quran protests.