Press "Enter" to skip to content

Sweden: Appeals court overrules cops, says burning the Qur’an is allowed by law

A rare victory for freedom and common sense. If Sweden disallowed Qur’an-burning because Muslims would riot, they would only be ensuring that Muslims will riot again the next time they want something. But given Sweden’s demographics, this permission is not likely to last long.

“Paludan had the right to burn the Koran – court overturns police decision,” translated from “Paludan hade rätt att bränna koran – domstol upphäver polisbeslut,” Samnytt, March 20, 2023:

Last year, the police made their own decision to refuse freedom of speech fighter and Islam critic Rasmus Paludan a demonstration permit in Norrköping. The decision was taken considering that there would likely be disturbances from the Muslim side, as Paludan intended to burn a copy of the Koran. Now the Court of Appeal has ruled that the police made a mistake in denying permission.

In 2022, Danish-Swedish opinion leader Rasmus Paludan burned Korans in a series of demonstrations. The idea of the demonstrations was to test Muslim respect for Western democratic freedom of expression and whether Muslims can handle provocations. The result was striking – a wave of brutal immigrant violence that subjected the police, among others, to extreme strain at its worst and in whose wake lawsuits are still ongoing.

The police were therefore not very enthusiastic about granting Paludan permission to hold new demonstrations. In an attempt to stop Paludan, they therefore chose to deny him a demonstration permit in Norrköping with reference to the public order law. The argument was that since there would likely be disturbances, the police could prevent the demonstration from being granted permission.

Now, however, the police are being reprimanded by the Court of Appeal, which has tried the case and concluded that the interpretation of the ordinance was incorrect.

The majority in the Court of Appeal does not at all consider that the provisions of the Public Order Act give the police the opportunity to cancel public gatherings as a result of disturbances that have occurred or are feared. Instead, it is the provisions on dissolving gatherings that may be relevant.

The opinion of the Court of Appeal is that the ordinance cannot be used for preventive purposes. On the contrary, it can only be used to break up a demonstration that is already in the making and that the police believe there is reason to shut down. Therefore, the Court of Appeal chooses to annul the police’s decision after the fact.



Spread the love