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Minister for Foreign Affairs hosted a dialogue with OIC ambassadors


On 4 August, Minister for Foreign Affairs Tobias Billström hosted a dialogue with ambassadors of OIC Member States at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The dialogue took place against the backdrop of repeated burnings of copies of holy scriptures and the resolution adopted by the OIC Member States at the Extraordinary Session of the Council of Foreign ministers of the OIC.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Tobias Billström’s video speech transcript, 4 August 2023 (in English and Arabic).pdf

“We have had a fruitful and constructive meeting. The ambassadors of the OIC Member States play an important role in explaining our situation to their capital cities, and I am keen to continue our open and constructive dialogue. This has been a good opportunity to explain and clarify our approach and outline the fundamental freedoms enshrined in Sweden’s constitution,” says Mr Billström. 

Representatives of more than 20 OIC Member States attended. Mr Billström reiterated that the Swedish Government strongly rejects the burnings of copies of holy scriptures that have taken place in Sweden. He also explained that the Ministry of Justice has initiated an analysis and is working on the terms of reference for an inquiry to review the Public Order Act.

“Restoring trust and confidence takes time. I will devote a substantial part of this electoral period to strengthening relationships with Muslim countries. I intend to travel to OIC countries, and Sweden will host discussions and dialogues in connection with the UN General Assembly in New York in September,” says Mr Billström.