Police shot a Somali man wielding an axe and a knife after he broke into the home of an artist whose cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed with a bomb-shaped turban outraged the Muslim world, the head of Denmark’s intelligence agency said yesterday.
Jakob Scharf said in a statement that a 28-year-old man with ties to al-Qaeda entered Kurt Westergaard’s home in Aarhus on Friday night, but Westergaard pressed an alarm and police arrived minutes later.
The attack on the artist, whose rendering was among 12 that led to the torching of Danish diplomatic offices in predominantly Muslim countries in 2006, was “terror related,” Scharf said.
He said the man would be charged with attempted murder.
Westergaard and his five-year-old granddaughter was in the home on a sleepover, sought shelter in a specially made safe room when the suspect broke a window of the home, Preben Nielsen of the Aarhus police said.
Officers arrived two minutes later and tried to arrest the assailant, who wielded an axe at a police officer. The officer then shot the man in a knee and a hand, authorities said.
Nielsen said the suspect was hospitalized, but his life was not in danger.
The suspect’s name was not released in line with Danish privacy rules.
“The arrested man has, according to PET’s information, close relations to the Somali terrorist group al-Shabab and al-Qaeda leaders in eastern Africa,” Scharf said.
PET is Denmark’s intelligence agency.
Scharf said, without elaborating, that the man is suspected of having been involved in terror-related activities in east Africa. He had been under PET’s surveillance, but not in connection with Westergaard, he said.
The man, who had a permit to stay in Denmark, was to be charged yesterday with attempted murder for trying to kill Westergaard and the police officer, Scharf said.
The suspect got inside the home of the 75-year-old cartoonist in Denmark’s second-largest city, 200km northwest of Copenhagen.
Westergaard could not be reached for comment.
He told his employer, however, the Jyllands-Posten daily, that the assailant shouted “revenge” and “blood” as he tried to enter the bathroom where Westergaard and the child had sought shelter.
“My grandchild did fine,” Westergaard said. “It was scary. It was close. Really close, but we did it.”
Westergaard was “quite shocked,” but was not injured, Nielsen said.
‘NO EQUILIBRIUM’: Taiwan’s increased defense spending is a good step, but it needs to do more to have the ability to deter aggression from China, a senior US official said The US plans to sell as many as seven major weapons systems — including mines, cruise missiles and drones — to Taiwan, four people familiar with the discussions said. Pursuing seven sales at once is a rare departure from years of precedent in which US military sales to Taiwan were spaced out and carefully calibrated to minimize tensions with Beijing. However, US President Donald Trump’s administration has this year become more aggressive with China, and the sales would land as relations between Beijing and Washington are at their lowest point in decades over accusations of spying, lingering trade tensions, disputes about the
CLOSE ENCOUNTERS: Several of the PLA fighter jets that crossed the median line of the Strait came within 68km of Hsinchu, drawing warnings from Taiwan, the ministry said At least 18 Chinese military aircraft yesterday flew into the nation’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on the second day of a US delegation’s visit, the Ministry of National Defense said, adding that the military responded by deploying an air defense missile system to monitor their activities. A delegation led by US Undersecretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment Keith Krach on Thursday started a three-day visit to Taiwan. The ministry from Thursday started publicizing the actions of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in Taiwan’s ADIZ on its Web site and Twitter. According to ministry reports, 18 PLA aircraft
WORKING OVERTIME? NTU professor Lee Duu-jong denied that he had held a part-time position at a Chinese university or joined China’s Thousand Talents Program A candidate for the post of National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (NTUST) president yesterday dropped out of the race following a report questioning his links to Chinese academia and government programs. Lee Duu-jong (李篤中), a professor at National Taiwan University’s (NTU) chemical engineering department, was a member of China’s Changjiang Scholars’ Program in 2006 and was on the list of its Thousand Talents Program in 2017, a report by Chinese-language Mirror Media magazine said yesterday. The article said that Lee is suspected of having held a part-time job at the Harbin Institute of Technology in China and was the recipient
TWO CASES: The five allegedly conspired with conglomerates, threatening the nation’s governance and subverting the rules of ethical conduct, a deputy chief prosecutor said Taipei prosecutors yesterday charged three legislators and one former lawmaker with contravening the Anti-Corruption Act (貪污治罪條例) in a case linked to former Pacific Distribution Investment Co (太平洋流通) chairman Lee Heng-lung’s (李恆隆) battle with the Far Eastern Group (遠東集團) over ownership of the Pacific SOGO Department Store (太平洋崇光百貨) chain, while independent Legislator Chao Cheng-yu (趙正宇) was indicted in a separate case involving two funeral services companies and a plot of land in a national park. Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislators Chen Chao-ming (陳超明) and Sufin Siluko (廖國棟), Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Su Chen-ching (蘇震清) and former New Power Party legislator