PESHAWAR: Street protests were staged in different parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Saturday against a Norwegian group’s attempt to burn a copy of the Holy Quran.

The Jamaat-i-Islami activists protested the incident outside the Peshawar Press Club and demanded of the government to use diplomatic channels to ensure an end to such incidents.

Holding banners and placards, the protesters shouted slogans against the Norwegian government over the desecration bid and urged Pakistanis to boycott goods made in Norway to record protest.

The JI’s youth wing organised the protest.

The protesters said blasphemous incidents frequently happened in western countries to the anger of Muslims.

They said Islam was a peaceful religion that preached love and religious harmony.

Lawyers to boycott courts tomorrow

The protesters said anti-Islamic acts by religious extremists annoyed Muslims, so the international community should step in for their elimination.

Meanwhile, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Bar Council announced that the lawyers would boycott courts across the province on Nov 25 to protest the Norway incident.

In a statement, vice-chairman of the council Saeed Khan said the bar associations would protest the Holy Quran desecration bid by holding special sessions on the premises of the respective courts.

He demanded of the government to sever diplomatic and trade ties with Norway and ensure that such incidents don’t happen in future.

Mr Saeed also urged the government to ensure the provision of legal support to the Muslim youth, who resisted the desecration bid.

In Mansehra, too, the lawyers boycotted courts and took to the streets to condemn the desecration of the Holy Quran in Norway.

The call for protect was given by the district bar association.

The lawyers marched on different roads from the bar premises to the Khatm-i-Nabuwat Chowk.

“We want Norwegian government to put to death Laurence Thorsten who tried to desecrate the Holy Quran and free Mohammad Ilyas, who reacted promptly to show his religious sentiments against the act,” district bar association president Amir Khan told lawyers at Khatm-i-Nabuwat Chowk.

Lawyers Wajid Khan Swati, Iftikhar Alam Tanoli and Ishtiaq Khan demanded the international community to repeal laws, which allow the desecration of divine books in the name of free speech.

Published in Dawn, November 24th, 2019

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