Lars Vilks, a Swedish artist who sparked international outrage in 2007 with paintings showing the Prophet Mohammad with a dog’s body, was died in a vehicle accident near the southern town of Markaryd on Sunday, according to police.
Vilks, 75, was traveling in a police car when it collided with a truck. He had been living under police protection since the drawings were released. In addition, two police policemen were murdered.
“This is a sad occurrence. It is now critical that we all do everything possible to figure out what happened and what caused the collision “According to a statement released by Swedish police on Monday.
“Initially, there is nothing that points to anyone else being involved.”
Most Muslims consider any depiction of the founder of Islam as offensive.
Since the publication of the cartoons, Vilks had been living under round-the-clock police guard following threats against his life. He had a bounty put on his head and his house was fire-bombed.
In 2015, one person was killed in Copenhagen, Denmark, at a meeting meant to mark the 25th anniversary of an Iranian fatwa against British writer Salman Rushdie, which Vilks attended.
Vilks was widely seen as the intended target.
Vilks had said that the cartoons were not intended to provoke Muslims, but to challenge political correctness in the art world.