Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks, known for his anti-Islamism and caused uproar in the Islamic world because of the Prophet Muhammad cartoons, died in a car accident. Two guard policemen guarding him were burned to death along with him after a car accident.
Swedish Police Chief Anders Thornber confirmed the incident in a statement and offered his condolences to the families of the two police officers.
As per the local media, three people were burned to death. One person was seriously injured in the vehicles after they exploded and caught fire due to the collision of a truck and a car on the highway near the settlement of Markaryd in the Smaland region. The injured person was the truck driver, and the people who died in the car were Lars Vilks and two police bodyguards.
Smaland police announced that they had launched an investigation into the incident. The truck driver is being interrogated.
Vilks was the author of a sketch of a roundabout dog with the head of Prophet Muhammad which was published in a Swedish newspaper in November 2007, causing outrage among Muslims. Vilks has been living at a secret address and travelling with police guards since 2007. He faced protests in many events and was attacked with eggs. In 2010, a court sentenced two men to two and three years in prison for the arson attempt at Vilks’s house. Few days prior to the arson attempt, Lars was attacked in the Uppsala University after his lecture on art and the freedom of expression. In March the same year, a terrorist group preparing an attack on Vilks were arrested in Ireland. The group included US citizen Colleen LaRose who was sentenced to 10 years in prison one year ago. As per reports, Al Qaeda promised up to $100,000 for Vilks’s head.