Iraqi immigrant Salwan Momika, who became well-known across Sweden this year after carrying out several protests in which he burned copies of the Islamic Quran, often causing violent reactions in Sweden and abroad, now faces deportation as authorities claim he provided them with incorrect information.
The Swedish Migration Agency announced this week that Momika would be deported back to his native country as the board is revoking the three-year residency permit that Momika was granted in April of 2021 along with his refugee status and, according to a report from state-run broadcaster SVT, will ban him from entering Sweden for the next five years.
Jesper Tengroth, press officer for the Swedish Migration Agency, explained that Momika’s residency permit was being revoked because the Iraqi provided the agency with incorrect information.
“The grounds are that he has been considered to have provided incorrect information about his need for protection when he applied for a residence permit in Sweden. I can’t go into detail,” Tengroth said.
Momika, meanwhile, stated that he has no intentions of ever leaving Sweden, stating:
I’m not leaving Sweden. I will live and die in Sweden. The Swedish Immigration Service has made a serious mistake. I suspect that there are hidden political motives behind this decision. I will appeal.
According to SVT, Momika will not be deported until at least April of next year, as he was granted a temporary Swedish residence permit due to the possibility that he may risk being tortured if he were to return to Iraq.
Issues regarding Momika’s residency in Sweden have been ongoing since August, when pictures of Momika posing with weapons were produced by the Swedish Migration Agency, which confronted the Iraqi regarding whether or not he had belonged to a Christian militia group that was part of a Shia Muslim umbrella organisation with ties to Iran.
Momika had previously claimed that he was simply a politician in Iraq and had not mentioned being part of a militia group to Swedish authorities.
Another photo appears to show that Momika also returned to Iraq in 2022, despite claiming he would be in danger if he returned. Momika stated that the photo in question, which had been posted online, had actually been taken prior to him coming to Sweden, claiming that the government was looking for an excuse to deport him.
Quran-burning protests, such as those performed by Momika along with similar demonstrations by others, have been a major problem for the Swedish government, which is attempting to join the NATO alliance but has been criticised by countries like Turkey for allowing such demonstrations.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stated in February that he would not accept Sweden’s NATO bid as long as burning the Quran was allowed.
“As long as you allow my holy book, the Qur’an, to be burned and torn apart, we will not say yes to your entry into NATO. Our view of Finland is positive, but not of Sweden,” Erdoğan said, but later changed his mind and approved Swedish entry into the military alliance, passing the issue over to the Turkish parliament this week for a vote.
Just prior to one of Momika’s announced Quran protests outside the Iraqi embassy in Stockholm in July, the Swedish embassy in Baghdad was violently stormed by a mob of hundreds of protestors who set fire to the embassy building.
After his protest, which saw Momika stomp on the Quran, Iraqi government officials announced a break in diplomatic relations with Sweden and cancelled work permits for the Swedish telecom giant Ericsson.
Quran burning has also been linked to security threats to Sweden by the Swedish security service, SÄPO, which carries out counter-terrorism operations. According to SÄPO, Sweden has become a priority target for Islamist extremists who want to carry out acts of terror.
Earlier this month, Islamist terrorist Abdesalem Lassoued, a failed asylum seeker from Tunisia, fatally shot two Swedish nationals in Brussels and injured a third.
Following the attack, he posted a video on social media explaining his allegiance to the Islamic State terrorist group and had previously stated his anger regarding the Quran burnings that took place in Sweden.
Source: The European Conservative