x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Five arrested in massacre plot at Danish newspaper over Prophet cartoons

"These arrests have successfully stopped an imminent terror attack, where several of the suspects ... were going to force their way into the (building which houses the Jyllands-Posten) in Copenhagen and kill as many people as possible," according to the Danish intelligence agency.

COPENHAGEN // The Danish intelligence agency PET said Wednesday it had arrested four men suspected of preparing a massacre at a newspaper which published caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.

A spokeswoman for Swedish intelligence agency Saepo said a fifth man had been arrested in Sweden in connection with the same plot against the Copenhagen-based Jyllands-Posten daily.

"These arrests have successfully stopped an imminent terror attack, where several of the suspects ... were going to force their way into the (building which houses the Jyllands-Posten) in Copenhagen and kill as many people as possible," PET head Jacob Scharf said in a statement.

The four men arrested in Denmark were a 44-year-old Tunisian, a 29-year-old Swede born in Lebanon, a 30-year-old Swede and a 26-year-old Iraqi asylum seeker.

The first three men all lived in Sweden and travelled to Denmark overnight, the PET statement said.

According to PET, the man arrested in Stockholm was a 37-year-old Swede of Tunisian background.

Scharf said several of the suspects could be described "as militant Islamists with connections to international terror networks."

"The arrests underscore the serious terror threat against Denmark and especially against institutions and people connected to the cartoon case," he added.

Saepo spokeswoman Katarina Sevcik said "the arrested people have up to now no known connection to the events of December 11."

On that day, a man blew himself up near a busy shopping street in central Stockholm, killing only himself in Sweden's first suicide bombing.

Jyllands-Posten published a dozen cartoons in 2005 of the Prophet Mohammed that triggereed violent and sometimes deadly protests around the world.