Norwegian Muslims to form ‘peace ring’ around Oslo synagogue

A 17-year-old Muslim in Norway is organizing a human ring around an Oslo synagogue Saturday in hopes of extinguishing "the prejudices people have against Jews and against Muslims."

"We think that after the terrorist attacks in Copenhagen, it is the perfect time for us Muslims to distance ourselves from the harassment of Jews that is happening," Hajrad Arshad, the organizer, told Norway's state broadcaster NRK.

She was referring to last weekend’s shootings in Copenhagen at a cultural center hosting a seminar on free speech with an artist who had caricatured the Prophet Muhammad  as a dog and then later at security forces outside a synagogue. The suspect was killed in a gun battle with police.

The so-called peace ring appeared to be welcomed by Jewish leaders in the country. Ervin Kohn, the leader of the Jewish community in the city, said he OK’d plans as long as more than 30 participants show up.

"I've said that it only comes to 30, it won't be good, it may seem counter-productive," he told NRK. "But if you fill Bergstien (the street where the synagogue is located), it will be very good."