Swedish police arrest two as riot breaks out at protest involving Holy Quran’s desecration

MALMO, SWEDEN   -   Swedish police on Sunday ar­rested two people and de­tained around 10 people af­ter a violent riot broke out at a protest involving the burn­ing of Holy Quran, police said. The protest was organised by Iraqi refugee Salwan Momi­ka, whose protests — which have included public desecra­tions of the holy book — have sparked outrage across the Middle East. Sunday’s protest was held in a square in the southern city of Malmo, which has a large immigrant popu­lation, and according to pub­lic broadcaster SVT around 200 people had showed up to watch. “Some onlookers have shown upset feelings after the organiser burned writings,” police said in a statement. “The mood was at times heated,” the statement said, adding that a “violent riot” occurred at 1:45 pm (1145 GMT). According to police, the event had end­ed after the organiser left but a group of people remained at the scene. About 10 people were detained for disturbing the public order and another two were arrested, suspected of violent rioting. Local media reported that some onlookers threw rocks at Momika, and video from the scene showed some trying to break through the cordon before being stopped by police. In another video, a man could be seen try­ing to stop the police car that transported Momika from the location by getting in front of it. Through a series of demon­strations, Momika has sparked anger directed at Sweden and diplomatic tensions between Sweden and several Middle Eastern countries.

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