Danish 'Mohammed' Cartoonist: No Regrets and No Censors
The Danish cartoonist whose caricature of the Islamic Prophet Mohammed sparked global Muslim riots seven years ago says he has no regrets, and wants no censors. Speaking in an interview this week with the Austrian magazine "News,” Kurt Westergaard said that freedom of speech is too precious to relinquish. "Should we in future let ourselves be censored by Islamic authorities in deeply undemocratic countries?” he asked.
Westergaard's question carried particular relevance in his own personal life: in 2010, he nearly died in an assassination attempt by a Muslim extremist wielding an axe. The would-be murderer, 29-year-old Mohamed Geele, was convicted of attempted terrorism and attempted murder and sentenced to a nine-year prison term in Denmark. He will be deported after serving his time in prison.
Muslims around the world said the image of the Prophet Mohammed drawn by Westergaard, which they believed mocked Islam, had offended them. In response, there were worldwide riots and violence that resulted in a number of deaths. (continue reading...)