(CNN) — The attack on a Danish political cartoonist “runs totally against the teachings and values of Islam,” the umbrella organization representing Muslim countries has said.
If the attack was a reaction to Kurt Westergaard’s drawing of the Muslim prophet Mohammed with a turban shaped as a bomb, “then it should be rejected and condemned by all Muslims,” the Organization of the Islamic Conference said in a statement Sunday.
An ax-wielding Somali man is accused of trying to break into Westergaard’s home Friday and was charged the next day with attempted assassination. Intelligence officials linked the suspect to an East African Islamist militia allied with al Qaeda.
The suspect tried to kill Westergaard and an on-duty police officer, the Danish Intelligence and Security Service said.
Police said Westergaard was “being taken care of” after the break-in, but wouldn’t reveal his new location.
The incident “once again confirms the terrorist threat that is directed against Denmark and against cartoonist Kurt Westergaard, in particular,” said Jakob Scharf, spokesman for the Danish Security and Intelligence Service.
Westergaard’s caricature of Mohammed — showing the prophet wearing a bomb as a turban with a lit fuse — was first published by the Danish newspaper Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten in September 2005. It sparked an uproar among Muslims in early 2006 after newspapers reprinted the images in support of free speech.
At the time, Westergaard said he wanted his cartoon to say that some people exploited the prophet to legitimize terrorism. However, many in the Muslim world interpreted the drawing as depicting their prophet as a terrorist.
Over the years, Danish authorities have arrested other suspects who allegedly plotted against Westergaard’s life.
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