The Truth Behind Bombing in Stockholm – Understanding the Attack

Lars Vilks

Attack appears to be retaliation to artist Lars Wilks free speech editorial

A failed terrorist attack in a central Stockholm district full of Christmas shoppers could have been catastrophic, Swedish authorities said late last night.

A crowded shopping district in Stockholm appears to have been the intended target of last nights terror attack, where a man detonated a backpack pipe-bomb, killing himself and one other.

Translated from Sydsvenskan – Original in Swedish

The incident began with several explosions in a car that was parked on the corner of Queen Street and Olof Palme street at eight minutes to five on Saturday afternoon and the car caught fire.

Two minutes past five set off a suicide bomber on an explosive device, a few hundred yards from the blasted car.

Failed Terror Attack

A crowded shopping district in Stockholm appears to have been the intended target

The bomber was found with a large quantity of nails and five pipe bombs in his backpack. One bomb apparently went off prematurely and killed the man.

The Attacker

Ten minutes before the attack, several Swedish news agencies received an email and audio recording claiming responsibility.

“Our actions will speak for themselves,” the person said in an audio recording “As long as you don’t end your war against Islam and the humiliation against the prophet and with your stupid support to Lars Vilks the pig.”

The emailer continues, addressing his family. He asks them for forgiveness for having misled them about a trip he made to the Middle East.

He asks his wife to kiss the kids from him. “Tell them Daddy loves them.”

“I never went to the Middle East to work or earn money, I went there for jihad”.

He says he could not tell his wife or his children. He assures his family’s love and asks his wife to kiss the kids from him.

“Tell them Daddy loves them.”

Lars Vilks

Controversial Artist Lars Vilks has a bounty on his head

Lars Vilks

The recording references Swedish troops in Afghanistan and the controversial artist Lars Vilks. Vilks has been receiving death threats since depicting the Islamic prophet Muhammad in an editorial series on the importance of freedom of speech.

When the series eventually ran in various Swedish papers, they received official condemnations from Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Egypt.

Al-Shabaab
Last November Vilks received a recording from Abu Zaid, a member of al-Shabaab.

“That organisation has no resources to speak of. They are almost bankrupt,” says Vilks

“Know what awaits you, as it will be nothing but this: slaughter! For that is what you deserve,” Zaid said, “To my brothers and sisters, I call you to make (migration), and if you can kill this dog called Lars, then you will receive a great reward from Allah,” Zaid said, according to the SITE Intelligence Group.

Al-Shabaab, or roughly translated, “Movement of Striving Youth” is an Islamist group involved in the ongoing war in Somalia. They are believed to control most of the southern and central parts of Somalia, including much of Mogadishu. They believe in a strict form of Sharia law.

Vilks responded to the threats last month, “That organisation has no resources to speak of. They are almost bankrupt,” he said.

“They send out that type of information to try to find volunteers that could interest them and to get attention. It’s something that can only lure in a few crazy people.”

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