The recent series of Quran-burning protests in Sweden and Denmark has stirred widespread controversy and raised important questions about the balance between freedom of speech and cultural sensitivity. The events began when a protester was allowed to burn a copy of the Quran outside a mosque in Stockholm, Sweden, during the Eid-al-Adha holiday. This act not only angered Muslim-majority societies but also led to concerns about security and strained diplomatic relations.

The incidents highlight the complex interplay between free speech, religious respect, and global relations in a rapidly interconnected world.

Real Research, an online survey app, launched a survey on the recurrent Quran-burning incidents in Sweden to gauge public opinion about the Quran-burning protests in Sweden.


  • Nearly half the respondents (45.53%) were well aware of the Quran-burning incidents in Sweden.
  • 41.37% were not concerned at all about the Quran burning incidents in Sweden.
  • 50.85% somewhat agree with Sweden’s response to the Quran burning.

Recent events in Sweden have brought attention to a concerning incident involving the Quran. Two individuals openly kicked and burned parts of the Quran, invoking local freedom of speech laws to justify their actions. According to the survey on Quran burning incidents in Sweden, the awareness of this incident varies, with 45.53% well aware, 33.21% vaguely aware, and 21.26% unaware.

Quran Burning Incident in Sweden Sparks Varied Reactions

Notably, this is not the first time that these individuals, Salwan Momika and Salwan Najen, have engaged in such actions. Their latest demonstration occurred in a notable square in Sweden’s capital, where they taunted counter-protesters using megaphones. Concern about these incidents is divided, with 41.37% expressing no concern, 36.9% slight concern, 13.46% some concern, and 8.27% extreme concern.

Figure 1: Respondents’ concern about these events.

The repercussions of these Quran burnings rippled beyond Sweden’s borders, prompting a diplomatic crisis and calls for a boycott of Swedish products from Muslim-majority countries. Opinions on this reaction are diverse, as 35.69% view it as appropriate, 33.24% see it as requiring a stronger response, and 31.07% consider it an overreaction.

Sweden’s Freedom of Speech Dilemma: A Debate on National Security and Expression

Sweden’s stance on maintaining its freedom of speech laws, unless there’s a clear threat to national security, has sparked debate. Survey results show 50.85% somewhat agreeing, 31.14% strongly agreeing, 13.49% somewhat disagreeing, and 4.52% strongly disagreeing with this approach.

Figure 2: Do you agree or disagree with the Sweden government’s response?

In a broader context, this year has seen multiple Quran burnings in both Sweden and Denmark. When asked about the appropriateness of freedom of speech laws allowing such acts, responses are divided: 39.15% find them somewhat appropriate, 29.71% somewhat inappropriate, 22.54% extremely appropriate, and 8.6% extremely inappropriate.

Figure 3: Respondents’ opinion on freedom of speech law in Sweden.

These findings highlight the complex nature of navigating freedom of speech, cultural respect, and national security in contemporary society.


Survey TitleSurvey on the Recurrent Quran Burning Incidents in Sweden
DurationAugust 17, 2023 – August 24, 2023
Number of Participants10,000
DemographicsMales and females, aged 21 to 99
Participating Countries Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, China (Hong Kong) China (Macao), China (Taiwan), Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Greanada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Lithuania, Malaysia, Maldives, Maluritania, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar [Burma], Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.