Tunisian cartoon plotters remain jailed

Both men allegedly planned to murder cartoonist


A Danish court ruled Friday it was legal to continue holding two Tunisians suspected of plotting to kill a Danish cartoonist who satirized Islam’s Prophet Mohammed without trial.

The two men, aged 26 and 37 and residents of Denmark, have been held at the request of the Danish intelligence agency PET's since February 12, when they were arrested on suspicion of planning to murder Kurt Westergaard.

Westergaard, 73, is one of 12 cartoonists whose drawings of the Muslim prophet were first published in a Danish newspaper in September 2005, sparking worldwide controversy.

Referring to documents presented by the PET on July 4, the Copenhagen Appeals Court confirmed a lower court finding that it was "reasonable and probable" the two had been planning to kill Westergaard.

They could therefore remain in custody until they are expelled from Denmark, the court ruled.

On the recommendation of PET, which considers the two Tunisians a threat to national security, the government has ordered them expelled without trial -- something that is permitted under Danish anti-terror laws introduced in 2002.