Quran-burning racist politician Paludan spoke: “I thought I scored against Turkey”
Arti Gercek reports that Rasmus Paludan, the leader of the far-right, Islamophobic, racist Hard Line Party (Stram Kurs) in Denmark who lit a Quran on fire in front of the Turkish Embassy in Sweden, which is currently waiting for Turkey’s approval for its accession to NATO, commented on the matter after reactions to the burning. Paludan, a Swiss-Danish dual citizen who talked to the Swedish newspaper Expressen said, “I thought I had scored against Turkey, but it did not turn out the way I thought it would.”
I’M NOT SORRY, BUT I AM AFRAID
Responding “no” to the newspaper’s question, “Do you regret what you did?” Paludan said that he went through with the burning for “important political reasons.” Discussing the death threats he has received after the protest, the racist Paludan said, “I was upset that so many people were threatening me with death.” The Hard Line Party leader who noted that he was receiving “close to 20 death threats per minute” on social media said he was “afraid when the death threats described in detail what they would do.”
UNCONNECTED TO NATO MEMBERSHIP
When the newspaper asked if there was a connection between Sweden's NATO membership and his actions, Paludan claimed that he "could not see a connection.” The racist politician said, "I don't see any connection between the NATO accession and one’s freedom of expression in Sweden. What matters for Turkey is Sweden's willingness to fight and its ability to defend."
HE CLAIMED IT WAS “FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION”
The racist Rasmus Paludan's burning of the Quran in front of the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm on Friday was on the agenda of the European and Turkish press. A group of counter protesters to the previously planned protest, which took place under the security of the police, had also gathered in the area. Facing the reaction of the group, Paludan emphasized that he was "against violence" and stated that he did not accept being called a "far rightist.” "Thinking that the Danish and Swedish constitutions should be obeyed does not mean being on the far right," said the racist politician about the protests of the counter demonstrators gathered in the area. He also said, "If you don't think freedom of expression should exist, then you can live elsewhere." In Turkey, both the government and the opposition released statements in response to Paludan's protest. (EXTERNAL NEWS)