Qur’an Violence: Cars Burnt, Arrests Made as Protests Hit Multicultural Malmo

People look on as cars burn on Ramels vag in Rosengard, Malmo following a riot in the early hours of the morning on September 4, 2023. (Photo by Johan Nilsson/TT / various sources / AFP) / Sweden OUT (Photo by JOHAN NILSSON/TT/TT NEWS AGENCY/AFP via Getty Images)
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Violent protests met a Qur’an burning demonstration in Sweden’s multicultural border city of Malmo on Sunday, leading to a fiery night of riots and accusations police had failed to prevent aggression.

Salwan Momika, an Iraqi asylum seeker and Islam critic who has become a serial burner of Qur’ans in Europe staged one of his protests in Sweden’s Malmo — long known as a city that has struggled with its so-called ‘no-go zones’ and the impacts of mass migration — on Sunday. In the same city that night, there was violent rioting, including cars burnt and police pelted with stones, and a spokesman for the force has said the events are linked.

Several people were arrested at the Qur’an burning itself, which took place in Malmo’s Värnhemstorget square, as they tried to break through police lines to rush Momika and his supporters. As attempts at disorder continued — police said there had been a “violent riot” at lunchtime — police ended the protest early and Momika was loaded into a police van and removed from the area.

Among the ten arrested at Värnhemstorget were two on suspicion of “violent riot”, and one of attacking a police officer. In one instance, an electric scooter was thrown at a police van.

Anticipating trouble that evening, police deployed camera drones to fly above the infamous Rosengård migrant suburb of Malmö that evening, and by nightfall recorded “several cars” and a garbage storage room burning. Through the evening other vehicles were set alight, including a number in an underground parking garage, bins were burnt, and police officers were pelted with stones.

Officers said the situation had returned to calm before daybreak the following day.

Remarkably, despite the presence of surveillance drones and the police having successfully anticipated violence was coming, no arrests took place overnight, with only those who protested at the book burning the previous day having so far felt the force of the law.

Police have been accused of having failed to prevent the riots and damage, but defended themselves from the criticism, saying their priority was the safety of individuals rather than preventing property damage. Furthermore their job was made more difficult because they were being pelted with stones through the night, a police spokesman said, reports Svt Nyheter.

The violence has been condemned by the Swedish Prime Minister, saying the riots are “completely unacceptable” and are a huge drain on police resources.

The riots are just the latest outburst of violence in response in response to a Qur’an burning in Sweden in recent years. While critics of the book burners say it is wrong to disrespect a religion in such a way, the protesters themselves say the extremely violent responses to attacks on the Qur’an prove their point that Islam is not a tolerant religion and presents a danger to European nations.

The country experienced days of major riots last year over easter after a Qur’an burning, with Muslim residents of the nation battling with police. Many vehicles, including police cars and trucks, were burnt out and several police officers were injured by thrown rocks.

A series of rioters have now been convicted, and some of them ordered to be deported once they have completed their prison sentences.


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