Update: Many major news outlets are reporting that Norwegian national Anders Behring Breivik, has been charged with the attacks in Norway. According to reports, he appears to to have a history of far-right and “Christian fundamentalist” views, and officials all but ruled out involvement by Islamic extremists.
A terror group, Ansar al-Jihad al-Alami (the Helpers of the Global Jihad), issued a statement claiming responsibility for the bombings in the Norwegian capital of Oslo that have killed at least seven people, and injured two more. In the statement, the terrorist organization claims the attack was a response to Norwegian forces’ presence in Afghanistan and to unspecified insults to the Prophet Muhammad.
The “insults” mentioned potentially refer to two instances where Norwegian newspapers upset Muslims by printing cartoon images of the Prophet Muhammad, a an act forbidden by Muslims. Several Norwegian newspapers, including Aftenposten and G Nett, have offices near the explosion and were forced to evacuate.
Back in 2010, a photo of a caricature of the Prophet Muhammad was printed on the front page of a Norwegian tabloid Dagbladet and led to peaceful protests by thousands of angered Muslims. The photo, which showed the Prophet Muhammad as a pig writing the Koran, drawn by an Israeli West Back settler in the 1990s, was meant to to illustrate a story describing how the Facebook page of the Norwegian Police Security Service (PST) linked to pages featuring caricatures of Muhammad.
“It was an illustration to our news story,” Lars Helle, Dagbladet’s acting editor-in-chief at the tome, told Reuters. They have the right to protest, but it was not a provocation, it was not meant as a provocation, it was meant as an illustration to a news story.”
In 2006, three Norwegian newspapers reprinted 12 controversial Danish cartoons that angered Muslims by depicting the Prophet Muhammad in cartoon form. The 12 cartoons were originally published back in 2005 in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten as a way to fight against self-censorship in Europe due to violent threats from groups from the Muslim minority.