(Bloomberg) -- The Danish parliament approved a bill banning the “inappropriate treatment” of religious books, an attempt by the Nordic country to end the ongoing burnings of the Koran that have triggered tensions with Muslim nations. 

Lawmakers voted 94-77 in Copenhagen to pass the measure introduced by the grand coalition government in August due to national security concerns. It followed a sudden string of Koran burnings in Denmark and neighboring Sweden that triggered protests across the Middle East.

The law, which has a narrower scope than originally proposed, is primarily aimed at “protecting the safety of Danes” while still giving “ample opportunity” to criticize religion, Justice Minister Peter Hummelgaard said at a parliament hearing last month. Violators could face a fine or imprisonment for up to two years.

Danish police registered more than 500 Koran-related demonstrations in the three months through Nov. 21, the national chief police inspector, Peter Ekebjaerg, said at the same hearing. In most cases, protesters burned the Koran, while some also wrapped the religious book in bacon, he said.

Read More: Why Koran Burning Has Sweden and Denmark in a Knot: QuickTake

The bill has been “received positively” by international players including the Arab League and foreign ministers in the Middle East, Michael Hamann, head of the Danish Security and Intelligence Service’s terrorism analysis, said last month. Opposition parties have criticized the move for giving into pressure from Islamic actors.

The government amended the draft after stakeholders including the police and cultural organizations in a public consultation raised concern it was too open to interpretation and would compromise general freedom of speech. The law now only covers scriptures of registered religious communities and the national church, whereas previously it included all holy objects of importance to all religious communities.

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