Oslo police ban protest near Turkish embassy citing ‘security concerns’

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Norwegian police said on Thursday they had decided for security reasons to ban a planned demonstration that had been due to take place outside the Turkish embassy in Oslo on Friday.

Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang reported earlier that a group of anti-Islam protesters planned to burn a copy of the Quran at the demonstration, echoing similar events last month in Sweden and Denmark.

“The police emphasize that burning the Quran is a legal political statement in Norway, but this event can’t go ahead due to security concerns,” Oslo police Inspector Martin Strand said in a statement.

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Earlier on Thursday, the Turkish foreign ministry summoned Norway’s ambassador over the Norwegian authorities’ permission for the protest which was planned for Friday, a ministry source said.

Ankara strongly condemned the permission which it says is a “provocative act” which will attack the Quran, the source from the ministry said, adding that the ministry had asked for a reversal of allowing the demonstration.

A protest including the burning a copy of Quran last month near the Turkish embassy in Stockholm by an anti-immigrant Danish-Swedish politician from the far-right fringe drew strong condemnation from Ankara.

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