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UN Chief Condemns Qur'an Burning

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TEHRAN, April 15 (ICANA) – United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has magnified the world body's condemnation of the recent Qur'an burning incident in the US in a response to a letter by Iran's UN envoy, expressing concern about the issue.
Friday, April 15, 2011 1:08:28 PM
UN Chief Condemns Qur'an Burning

In a letter to Iran's Ambassador to the United Nations Mohammad Khazaei, Ban strongly condemned the “unacceptable” act of burning the Muslims' holy book in a US church, according to a Friday press release by the office of the Iranian envoy.

American Pastor Wayne Sapp burned a copy of the Holy book under the supervision of controversial Christian preacher Terry Jones in Florida on March 20. Terry Jones is another US pastor that drew sweeping condemnation last September over his plan to ignite a stack of the Muslims' holy book on the anniversary of September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.

The UN chief said Sapp's burning of the Qur'an was motivated by intolerance and negligence.

He also highlighted the importance of mutual respect for different cultures and said the United Nations would continue its efforts to enhance mutual understandings between different religions.

Earlier, the Iranian envoy had written a letter to the UN chief, urging the chief of the international body to take a stance regarding the burning of Islam's holy book.

On April 5, Ban voiced his condemnation of the burning of the Qur'an in a meeting with a group of ambassadors representing countries in the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC).

"Such actions cannot be condoned by any religion," he said in the meeting, adding that such actions contradict the efforts of the United Nations and many people around the world to promote tolerance, intercultural understanding and mutual respect between cultures and religions.

The burning of the holy Qur'an has ignited mass protests around the Muslim world.

The sacrilegious move unleashed a wave of deadly protests in Afghanistan in early April.

Ten UN foreign workers were killed after a small number of furious protesters stormed the UN headquarters in the northern Afghan city of Mazar-i-Sharif against a background of anti-Western sentiments in the country.

At least ten Afghans were killed and 83 others wounded in the southern city of Kandahar on a second day of violent protests over the desecration of the holy Qur'an.

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