Desecrating the most sacred images of Islam has been a long-running campaign by the far right, particularly in Europe.
Numerous cases of the Holy Quran being burned or desecrated in European countries have occurred in recent months.
The most recent incident, which contrasts with past incidents that largely happened in Sweden and Denmark, happened on September 23 in the Netherlands when the head of Pegida’s Dutch branch vandalised the Bible outside many Muslim embassies. Pegida is a notorious pan-European hate organisation.
These included the Indonesian, Pakistani, and Turkish missions. There was an unpleasant caricature wave before to the Quran burnings, and if one were to go back in time, there were Orientalist stereotypes disparaging Islam and its revered personalities inThese included the Indonesian, Pakistani, and Turkish missions. A wave of insulting parodies preceded the Quran burnings, and if one goes further back, Orientalist stereotypes denigrated Islam and its revered figures in the name of “scholarship.”
It is obvious that the hatred behind these assaults on Islam is not a commitment to free expression. It should be underlined that many of the hateful individuals responsible for these horrible crimes are associated with the same violent white nationalist political movement that gave rise to the murderers of Muslims in Christchurch, Oslo, and Montreal.
Thus, Islamophobia is about supporting and encouraging actual violence against Muslims rather than abstract ideas of free speech. And it is not just the fanatics in the West. But there was one encouraging move in this direction last week at the UN General Assembly, where leaders from the Muslim world spoke together to condemn Islamophobia, displaying a rare level of unanimity.
While Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said that the acts of desecration were “not worthy of human dignity,” Turkish President Recep Erdogan claimed that racism was “a plague” that was infecting the West. Pakistan has long opposed Islamophobia in public venues.
In addition to criticism, actionable efforts are required to stop these provocations, especially in the states where repeated acts of desecration have taken place.
According to reports, Denmark and Sweden are both thinking about outlawing the destruction of sacred books for security reasons. These actions need to be endorsed because they should help stop this threat. After millions of Jews were slaughtered on European territory more than 60 years ago, Europe adopted a consistent stance against anti-Semitism. Western democracies must do the same to combat Islamophobia. Acts of hatred against Islam or any other faith must be prohibited, just as disputing the Holocaust is illegal in many Western states.
A new covenant based on tolerance and respect is required amongst civilizations. If one of the major religions in the world’s most hallowed symbols are continually attacked and desecrated, this cannot be accomplished.