A 42-year-old man in Denmark is being charged with blasphemy after filming himself burning the Quran. He will be the first person to be charged under Denmark's blasphemy law in 46 years.
The Local reports that he filmed the video in 2015 and posted it on the anti-Islamic Facebook group, “Yes to freedom - no to Islam” along with the words, “Consider your neighbour: it stinks when it burns.”
Danish prosecutor Jan Reckendorff announced the decision to bring charges in a statement issued Wednesday afternoon.
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“It is the prosecution's view that circumstances involving the burning of holy books such as the Bible and the Quran can in certain cases be a violation of the blasphemy clause, which covers public scorn or mockery of religion,” the statement read.
The Local says this is only the fourth time in history anyone has been prosecuted under Denmark's blasphemy clause. They report “four people were sentenced for posting posters mocking Jewish teachings in 1938; two people were fined for carrying out a fake baptism at a masked ball in 1946; and two programme leaders at Danish Radio were exonerated in 1971 for airing a song mocking Christianity.”
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If convicted of blasphemy, the maximum penalty is four months in prison. However, the prosecutor's press statement says the penalty in this case may be a fine.
It's important to note that Danish prosecutors refused to invoke the country’s blasphemy laws in 2006, when the Jyllands-Posten newspaper published cartoons of the Islamic Prophet Mohammed.
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