March 23
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Protesters gathered outside Sweden's embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Monday to demonstrate against the burning of a Quran by a far-right Danish politician, BBC News reported.

Rasmus Paludan destroyed the Muslim holy book in Stockholm earlier in January outside the Turkish embassy.

"We urge the Indonesian government to not just condemn this, but to also join in boycotting everything Swedish," said one protester in Jakarta, Wati Salam.

The burning, and other protests, have led to a major diplomatic row between Sweden and Turkey.

Sweden needs Turkey's approval to join NATO—something now under threat.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recently said his country may approve Finland's bid, but not Sweden's.

Other anti-Sweden protests have also taken place in Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, and Lebanon this month.

The Swedish embassy in Jakarta said the burning does not reflect the government's opinion.

Since the military actions in Ukraine in February last year, both Sweden and Finland have applied to join NATO.

Any NATO enlargement must be approved by all 30 members—and Turkey seemingly agreed to Sweden and Finland's bid in June.

But formal approval has been held up. Turkey has told Stockholm it must extradite Kurds it views as terrorists.

Sweden has made legal changes that allow it to make tougher anti-terror laws demanded by Turkey.

The government has also lifted a ban on selling military equipment to Turkey, in place since Ankara's military intervention in Syria in 2019.

But Turkey was angered when an effigy of the Turkish president was hanged by Kurdish groups in Stockholm in January.

Turkey then cancelled a planned visit to the country by Sweden's defense minister, at the time of the Quran burning.

According to Reuters news agency, the permit Paludan received from police stated that his demonstration was against Islam, and what he called Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan's attempt to influence freedom of expression in Sweden.

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