Social media was set ablaze with praises on Friday for a ‘Muslim hero’ who interrupted an anti-Islam rally last week to stop another man from burning a copy of the Quran in Norway.
A scuffle broke out after the leader of the ‘Stop Islamisation of Norway (SIAN)’ rally, Lars Thorsen, tried to burn a copy of the sacred book in the city of Kristiansand despite warnings from local police officials.
In a video on social media, the ‘Muslim hero’ could be seen jumping into the barricaded circle to save the sacred book from being desecrated. The rally soon turned violent, after which police took Thorsen and his attackers into custody.
This man (Ilyas) attacked a man who was burning Quran in front of hundreds of people in Norway.
He's my hero. May Allah bless this man. May Allah bless all Muslims (including all MALDIVIANS)
with more boldness and courage to defend Islam. ❤️
— Mohamed Bushree🇸🇦 (@MohamedBushree2) November 22, 2019
The man who stopped Thorsen from burning the Quran was being called Ilyas on social media, but his exact identity could not be ascertained.
Netizens took to social media to praise Ilyas and also raise alarm over the rise of Islamophobia in Europe and around the world as reported by The International.
A man was burning Quran in Norway whilst everyone watched.
This young Muslim Stopped him and dragged him down to the floor.
Salute. Its take alot of courage to take action when others just watch. pic.twitter.com/APV1mgHjf2
— پښتون (@S4JJ40) November 21, 2019
Pic 1: The one who saved Mosque
Pic 2: The one who saved Quran. Two lions of Norway pic.twitter.com/gyhsTTZAgL
— TEAMKHR EAGLE (@TeamKHREagle) November 22, 2019
— Elif turkish 🇹🇷🇵🇰 (@Turkey_Istambul) November 22, 2019
The Pakistan Union Norway (PUN), an important social and cultural organisation, condemned the incident.
PUN Chairman Chaudhry Qamar Iqbal said that a man hurt the sentiments of Muslims by desecrating the Holy Quran. He said that Norwegians were peaceful people and Norway enjoyed a good reputation around the world as it respected the rights of other religions.
Iqbal said that the people of Norway and its Muslims were also hurt over the fact that the desecration took place in broad daylight and the police did nothing to stop it.
He condemned the police for springing into action only when the man jumped in to stop the desecration and, instead, came to the aid of the agitator.
The PUN chairman urged the government of Norway to stop people who instigated and hurt the sentiments of others through extremism.