Florida Pastor Arrested En Route To Burn Thousands of Qurans

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Sept. 11 2013 8:50 PM

Florida Pastor Terry Jones Arrested Before He Could Burn Thousands of Qurans

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Pastor Terry Jones updates the media on Sept 8, 2010 outside his Gainesville, Florida, church where he and his congregation planned to burn Korans on September 11, 2010.

Photo by PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images

Pastor Terry Jones was arrested in Florida on Wednesday as he drove to a park to light some 3,000 Qurans on fire in protest of the 9/11 attacks.

Jones, along with another pastor at his small evangelical Christian church, were arrested on felony charges as he was driving a pickup truck “towing a large barbecue-style grill filled with Qurans soaked in kerosene,” the AP reports. Jones was planning on burning 2,998 Qurans, one for every victim of the September 11th attacks.

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This is not Jones' first so-called protest that has involved burning the Quran. Here’s more on Jones from the AP:

He first gained attention in 2010 when he planned to burn a Quran on 9/11, although he eventually called it off. His congregation did burn the Muslim holy book in March 2011 and last year he promoted an anti-Muslim film. All three incidents sparked violence in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

The most violent protest happened after the 2011 Quran burning as hundreds of protesters stormed a U.N. compound in Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan, killing seven foreigners, including four Nepalese guards.

The U.S. military has repeatedly asked Jones to refrain from his protests because they endanger American troops abroad. Sheriff's officials will hold a news conference later Wednesday to discuss specific charges, according the AP.

Elliot Hannon is a writer in Washington, D.C. Follow him on Twitter.