Five arrested for alleged plan to attack Danish newspaper

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

COPENHAGEN - Five people have been arrested on suspicion of planning an attack on the Danish newspaper that in 2005 published controversial caricatures of the Muslim prophet Mohammed, the Danish secret service PET said Wednesday.

The PET said that an armed “attack against the Copenhagen offices of the Jyllands-Posten” had been imminent.

Four suspects were arrested in Denmark, where three of the four had arrived from neighbouring Sweden, the PET said.

The suspects were described as militant Islamists and had international ties, PET head Jakob Scharf said in a statement.

Scharf said the arrests were the result of close cooperation with the Swedish security service. In Sweden, another man was also reportedly arrested in connection with the case.

Four of the five suspects lived in Sweden and three had Swedish citizenship, the Swedish security service said.

“A serious terrorist attack in Denmark has been averted thanks to effective and close cooperation,” Swedish security service head Anders Danielsson said.

Swedish authorities were prepared to assist the Danish secret service, and had launched a separate enquiry into the suspects with ties to Sweden.

The suspects have not been linked to a suicide attack Dec 11 in Stockholm in which a 28-year-old man was the only fatality.

The Jyllands-Posten has been the target of several alleged plots since the publication of the caricatures. Almost exactly a year ago, an axe-wielding man forced his way into cartoonist Kurt Westergaard’s home.

Westergaard had made a cartoon of the prophet Mohammed with a bomb in his turban.

Scharf said the terror alert level was not affected by the arrests. The Swedish secret service made a similar assessment.

Filed under: Terrorism

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