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Policy Brief

How to respond to Quran desecrations? What we can learn from earlier incidents

11 Dec 2023

In 2008, the Dutch government prepared a strategic communications campaign to prevent and to manage a potential fall out in terms of polarisation in society and rising security risks as a result of the broadcasting of the Islam-critical movie ‘Fitna’, produced by a Dutch politician. The Dutch government learned lessons from the response by the Danish government to the Mohammed cartoon riots in 2005 to inform its own strategic communication campaign. The authors of this Policy Brief reflect on the lessons of this successful campaign to offer recommendations to governments on how to respond to the recent Quran desecrations.