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Gunman dead after two shootings in Denmark

February 19th, 2015

 

A free speech debate in Copenhagen was interrupted on Saturday, Feb. 14 when a gunman opened fire, killing one attendant and injuring three police officers.

 

According to witnesses, a 22-year-old unnamed gunman opened fire outside of the venue, attempting to enter it before armed guards returned fire. The gunman fled in response, Reuters reported.

 

A second shooting, which killed one civilian and two more police officers, occurred just hours later outside a synagogue. Police believe the same gunman was responsible for both attacks.

 

The police eventually shot and killed the gunman in the Nørrebro district when he opened fire on police.

 

François Zimeray, French ambassador to Denmark, compared the attacks to the shooting at the offices of Parisian satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo last month.

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The free speech debate was hosted by Lars Vilks, a controversial Swedish artist known for depicting the Islamic prophet Muhammad as a dog. Although he was uninjured, Vilks feels the attacks were aimed at him, according to the BBC.

 

After Vilks’ depictions of Muhammad were published in 2007 in several Swedish newspapers, al-Qaida enacted a $100,000 bounty on him.

 

The BBC reported that Vilks was placed on al-Qaida’s “most wanted” list in 2013.

 

Editor’s Note: Information from Reuters, ABC and the BBC was used in this report.