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TERRORISM

Swedish suspect linked to convicted terrorists

The 29 year old Swedish man arrested in Denmark on Wednesday on suspicion of plotting a terrorist act against the Jyllands-Posten newspaper has close links to two men convicted in Sweden of terror-related crimes, according to media reports

Swedish suspect linked to convicted terrorists

According to the Aftonbladet newspaper, Munir Awad had shared a flat Stockholm with two men who were convicted in December in Gothenburg. The district court sentenced the two men, Elias Billé Mohamed, 26, and Mohamoud Jama, 23, to four years in prison after finding that they were preapred to commit suicide bombings in the name al-Shabaab, a Somalia-based Islamic militia with ties to al-Qaeda.

Meanwhile, a 26 year old Iraqi asylum seeker who was also arrested in Denmark but has since released has claimed his innocence.

“I am completely clean” he told the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet.

The 26 year old maintains that he thought his apartment would be lent to a Swedish man and his wife, but when he went to meet them outside Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen, there were three men there instead.

Four men were arrested on Thursday in a joint Swedish-Danish investigation for hatching what Danish officials called a plan to “kill as many people as possible” in an imminent assault on the Copenhagen offices of the Jyllands-Posten daily.

In 2005, Jyllands-Posten published a dozen cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that triggered violent and sometimes deadly protests around the world.

On Wednesday Jakob Scharf, the head of Danish intelligence agency PET, told reporters “the plan was to try to gain access to the location of Jyllands-Posten in Copenhagen and to try to carry out a Mumbai-style attack.”

BREAKING

Swedish prosecutors upgrade Almedalen knife attack to terror crime

Prosecutors in Sweden are now treating the murder at the Almedalen political festival as a terror crime, with the country's Säpo security police taking over the investigation.

Swedish prosecutors upgrade Almedalen knife attack to terror crime

In a press release issued on Monday evening, the Swedish Prosecution Authority, said that the 32-year-old attacker, Theodor Engström, was now suspected of the crime of “terrorism through murder”, and also “preparation for a terror crime through preparation for murder”. 

Engström stabbed the psychiatrist Ing-Marie Wieselgren last Wednesday as she was on her way to moderate a seminar at the Almedalen political festival on the island of Gotland. 

Although he was a former member of the neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement, police said his motive seemed to be to protest against Sweden’s psychiatry services, who he felt had treated his own mental illness badly. 

The release gave no details as to why the 32-year-old was now being investigated for a more serious crime, but terror expert Magnus Ranstorp told the Expressen newspaper that the shift indicated that police had uncovered new evidence. 

READ ALSO: What do we now know about the Almedalen knife attack? 

“The new crime classification means that they’ve either found a political motive for the attack which meets the threshold for terrorism, and that might be a political motive for murdering Ing-Marie Wieselgren,” he said. “Or they might have discovered that he was scouting out a politician, or another target that could be considered political.” 

Engström’s defence lawyer said last week that his client, who he described as disturbed and incoherent, had spoken in police interrogations of having “a higher-up target”. 

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