Swedish newspaper was bomber's target: website

An al-Qaeda affiliated website says the suicide bomber behind an attack in central Stockholm was targeting a newspaper that published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.
Swedish police officers patrol at the central railway station in Stockholm on Tuesday as security measures were stepped up following a suicide bomb attack on a main shopping street last weekend. ((Pontus Lundah/Associated Press))

A website affiliated with al-Qaeda said Tuesday a suicide bomber behind the blasts that shook central Stockholm on the weekend was targeting a newspaper that published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad when one of his bombs exploded too soon.

Taimour Abdulwahab, an Iraqi-born Swede who spent much of the past decade in Britain, died in the botched attack on a busy shopping street late Saturday, terrifying Christmas shoppers.

A writer on the Shumokh al-Islam website wrote Tuesday that one of the bomber's six gas cylinders in his car exploded prematurely. The writer said the bomber then tried to escape but one of the bombs strapped to his body also exploded too soon.

Neither the writer nor the newspaper was named. Several Swedish papers published the cartoons but Swedish police have declined to say whether any newspapers were the actual target.

On July 7, 2005, four bombers gathered in Luton before taking a train to London and blowing themselves up on the transit system. Last year, the town was also the site of a small but widely covered protest in which a handful of Islamists picketed a homecoming parade for British soldiers returning from Iraq, holding up signs accusing the men of being "butchers" and "baby-killers."