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Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

White House

Mike Emanuel

Washington, DC


NATO & Petraeus condemn Koran burning plan

September 7, 2010 - 2:51 PM | by: Mike Emanuel

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen says he strongly condemns plans by Terry Jones, pastor of the 50-member Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Florida, to burn the Koran on September 11th.

“Burning of the Koran is disrespectful, and I urge all people to demonstrate respect for faith,” Rasmussen said in an exclusive interview with Fox News.

“Such acts are in contradiction with the values and principles… we base our tolerant democracies, in contradiction for the values which we fight in Afghanistan and elsewhere,” the Secretary-General said.

When asked if he’s concerned burning the Muslim holy book could lead to NATO troops being killed in Afghanistan, Rasmussen said, “it is a risk, and this is also the reason why I strongly condemn these acts.”

The NATO Secretary-General joins top U.S. military commander General David Petraeus in expressing serious concerns about potential repercussions and the impact on the war in Afghanistan.

“Images of the burning of a Koran would undoubtedly be used by extremists in Afghanistan — and around the world — to inflame public opinion and incite violence,” Petraeus told Fox in a written statement.  “This would, again, put our troopers and civilian in jeopardy and undermine our efforts to accomplish the critical mission here in Afghanistan.”

Rasmussen spoke to Fox News after an Oval Office meeting with President Obama.

It is not clear if this latest condemnation will have an impact on Pastor Jones.

Photo Credit: AP Photo

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