Memorandum of Protest to the Swedish Government Who Supports the Burning of the Quran by Rasmus Paludan, a Far-right Swedish Politician, in the Name of ‘Free Speech’
On the 21st of January 2023, Rasmus Paludan, leader of the Danish far-right party Stram Kurs, burnt a copy of Islam’s Holy Book (Al-Quran) under the protection of the Swedish police and approval of the government. In a hypocritical message, your Prime Minister criticised the burning but at the same time supported the ‘right’ for Rasmus to carry out this heinous act in the name of ‘freedom of expression’.
This is not the first time that the Swedish government have condoned such sacrilege. Rasmus Paludan was allowed to carry out the same profane act in 2022 which resulted in a severe social unrest. In 2020, your government had also allowed such spiteful acts when a group of people burnt and stepped on the Quran in Malmo. We also remember very well the insult upon our noble Prophet in 2007 through offensive cartoons under the pretext of freedom of expression. And in 2017 a Swedish politician declared that Muslims are, in fact, not human beings. In the same year, Swedish Justice and Interior Minister Morgan Johansson equated Muslims with the Nazis and right-wing extremists, blaming them for spreading anti-Semitism.
It is very clear to us and many, that your government, despite your hypocritical criticisms on the perpetrators, you will, continuously act as a platform, in the name of ‘freedom of expression’ to attack and undermine Islam. In actual fact you pick and choose when to decide what should or should not be labelled as freedom of expression. As a nation that aspires to become a part of NATO, you have not chosen to specifically antagonise Turkiye, but you have deliberately chosen to insult almost 2 billion Muslims of the world. This has clearly demonstrated your willingness to undermine Islam and your evident hatred of the religion. You wave the banner of freedom of expression when it comes to insulting Muslims and Islam but deemed criticisms on the Holocaust of the Jews as ‘insensitive and inappropriate’. Such hypocrisy!!
Be informed that any insults to the sanctity of Islam and Muslims will be taken seriously by the Ummah of Islam. Despite the current relentless attacks by the enemies of Islam and the betrayal of the current rulers of the Muslims, the Ummah will never remain silent on injustice, and will never forget those who insult and belittle Allah (swt) and His Prophet (pbuh). Either you believe in Allah the Almighty or not, know that He the Almighty has prepared for the attackers of Islam, a humiliating torment in the Hereafter. He the Almighty said:
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يُؤْذُونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ لَعَنَهُمُ اللَّهُ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَالْآخِرَةِ وَأَعَدَّ لَهُمْ عَذَاباً مُّهِيناً
“Indeed, those who abuse Allah and His Messenger – Allah has cursed them in this world and the Hereafter and prepared for them a humiliating punishment” [Al-Ahzab: 57]
We remind the Swedish government that this Ummah has been working to regain its real authority by working to remove its oppressive rulers, and by re-establishing the Caliphate to re-unite itself and to return the glory of Islam.
Henceforth, we would like to stress and re-iterate what we have said to you before, that:-
1. We, and other Muslims in Malaysia utterly condemn and are enraged by the heinous crime of insulting the Quran or the honour of Prophet Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh). We affirm that the attack on Islam in any form is totally unacceptable and constitutes an act of barbarism, no matter what the justifications are. We firmly stress that the sanctity of the Muslims must be respected, and we will not accept anything less whatever the reasons or excuses may be.
2. What you call ‘freedom of expression’ has continuously become a tool to bully and persecute a minority community in your country despite the fact that they did nothing wrong to you or your country, except that their Deen (religion) is Islam. It is so obvious that the Muslim community in your country is being pushed to adopt ‘Western values’ – values that cannot deal with minorities without bullying and policing their thoughts. It is therefore not surprising that the Muslim community rejects them as these values have no intellectual substance. The greater the attacks on Islam is, the greater will the Muslim community embrace his honour.
3. On your arguments of ‘freedom of expression”, we would like to say:-
- Freedom of speech and expression is clearly used by you selectively – In Western countries, Muslim women cannot dress in their own Islamic clothing in public, their right to enjoy an education is violated and their right to fulfil public services are denied. Wearing a face-veil in public is legally prohibited and punishable. Even when almost the whole Islamic world protested and demanded that you stop all the injustice towards Muslims, and stop insulting our religion, you never budge an inch.
- As paradoxical as it may sound, freedom of speech in the West which is considered a constitutional right, is ignored when it comes to critical oppositions (those who think outside the norms of liberal democracy) and these are silenced through preventive and repressive policies. And if necessary, they are silenced with brute force and heavy punishment. This shows that even the supporters of freedom of speech are not convinced of this idea and this idea is only used to serve your agenda.
- This is the true face of democracy, if you ever had one and your double standards – they are subject to your own interests. So, the killing of one man is terrorism and brutality, while the killing of hundreds of thousands of children, women and elderly Muslims in all corners of the earth is a question that needs to be viewed!!! Your capitalist system has proved that it is devoid of anything sacred, it is a rotten and worn-out system that is barbaric and is a clear enemy of humanity.
- As a matter of fact, the attacks on Islam have absolutely nothing to do with “freedom”. The appeal to freedom is a hollow slogan invoked each time you and the West seek to deprive the Muslims of the very “rights” espoused under these slogans. We shall never forget the West’s brutality and murderous military adventures overseas or its friendly relations with the world’s dictators, all justified through an appeal to the liberal doctrine. These attacks have nothing to do with freedom, but everything to do with neo-colonialism – and specifically countering the Muslim’s desire to free themselves from the shackles of centuries of European colonialism.
You should take serious notes that:-
1. The insult on Islam have been rightly criticised by many sane voices in Europe. Scores of people with or without faith who has the slightest concern for societal harmony, have expressed disapproval of the deliberate insult and provocation of a people’s core beliefs, warning that such actions will generate responses that are undesirable to communal harmony.
2. You are not the only people who regard your beliefs as sacrosanct. Muslims, too, have red lines over which no compromise can be accepted. Ignoring this fact is ignorance at best and blind arrogance at the worst.
3. The time has come for you to realise that the Ummah of Islam is alive, will not die, and is willing to sacrifice for its ideology, its Al-Quran and its Prophet (pbuh), its hearts and lives. It does not recognise weakness despite all the heinous crimes of the oppressive rulers, Muslims or non-Muslims alike, and that it is determined to live in dignity and pride of Islam even though the Unbelievers may detest it.
4. Finally, we would like you to know that we, the Muslims are one nation. We believe in Allah (swt), His Book and His Prophet (pbuh) and we will always stand up to defend the honour of Islam. The so-called freedom of speech or any hypocritical Western ideas can never convince us otherwise, not even for a second. And no matter how imprudent the attacks and wishes are to degrade the sanctities of this Deen, Allah’s promise of victory is just a matter of time. Allah (swt) says:
يُرِيدُونَ أَن يُطْفِئُوا نُورَ اللَّهِ بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَيَأْبَى اللَّهُ إِلَّا أَن يُتِمَّ نُورَهُ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْكَافِرُونَ * هُوَ الَّذِي أَرْسَلَ رَسُولَه بِالْهُدَى وَدِينِ الْحَقِّ لِيُظْهِرَهُ عَلَى الدِّينِ كُلِّهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْمُشْرِكُونَ
“They want to extinguish the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah refuses except to perfect His light, although the disbelievers dislike it. It is He who has sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth to manifest it over all religion, although they who associate others with Allah dislike it” [At-Tawbah: 32-33].
Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir in Malaysia