x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Violent demonstration over planned Quran burning despite cancellation

Hundreds of Afghans have poured onto the streets of Kabul to protest against plans - cancelled days ago - by a US church to burn copies of the Quran.

Hundreds of Afghans poured onto the streets of Kabul Wednesday to protest against plans - cancelled days ago - by a US church to burn copies of the Quran., officials and witnesses said. The demonstrators threw rocks at anti-riot police after the officers prevented them from marching towards the city centre, Zemarai Bashary, an interior ministry spokesman said. The protesters shouted anti-US slogans and set fire to tyres to block a road.

"The police are in control. They have fired into the air to control the mob," Mr Bashary said. Two people died in similar protests at the weekend after the Dove World Outreach Centre in Florida threatened to burn Qurans to mark the anniversary of the September 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington in 2001. Pastor Terry Jones, leader of the tiny church, cancelled the plans after enormous pressure from world leaders including the US president Barack Obama.

* AFP