Shots Fired At Freedom of Speech Event Organized by Cartoonist Who Drew Muhammad

Shots Fired At Freedom of Speech Event Organized by Cartoonist Who Drew Muhammad
Source: AP
Source: AP

Updated 1:10 pm EST: Danish police say one man is dead following a shooting at a cafe in Copenhagen.

According to Danish media reports, multiple shots have been fired at a cafe in Copenhagen, Denmark, where an event supporting "art, blasphemy and freedom of speech" in Europe was being held.

The event was organized by controversial Swedish cartoonist and artist Lars Vilks, who has faced numerous death threats and assassination plots since he drew a series of cartoons featuring the Prophet Muhammad. Vilks has even been featured on a purported al-Qaida hit list for the cartoons, which depicted Muhammad as a roundabout dog (a Swedish art installation that looks like a dog and is commonly found in traffic circles). The cartoons drew international condemnation after Swedish newspaper Nerikes Allehanda published one of the cartoons in an editorial on the "right to ridicule a religion."

According to the Associated Press, the window of the cafe was riddled with as many as 30 bullet holes, and at least two people, including a police officer in uniform, were wounded. Event organizer Helle Merete Brix told the Associated Press that Vilks was not injured. "I saw a masked man running past," she said, according to the Associated Press. "A couple of police officers were injured. I clearly consider this as an attack on Lars Vilks."

François Zimeray, France's ambassador to Denmark, was also at the event and tweeted that he was "still alive."

h/t The Associated Press