Danish police launched raids across Copenhagen on Sunday (Feb 15) after killing the suspected lone gunman behind a double shooting that stoked European fears of a new wave of extremist violence.
Police said the unnamed man who killed two people at a cultural centre and a synagogue was known to police and may have been inspired by the Paris Islamist attacks last month that claimed the lives of 17 people.
At the synagogue in the centre of Copenhagen, tearful Danes laid flowers and lit candles in memory of the victims of the worst such attack in the history of the small Scandinavian nation.
Expressions of sympathy and horror poured in from across the world after the weekend shootings described by Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt as a "cynical act of terror".
Danish broadcaster TV2 identified the assailant as a 22-year-old who was born and raised in Denmark and who was known to police because of his involvement in gangs.
In a killing spree that bore a striking resemblance to the Paris attacks, the gunman first fired off a volley of bullets at a cultural centre where a panel discussion about Islam and free speech was taking place on Saturday evening.
A 55-year-old man identified by the media as documentary film maker Finn Norgaard was killed at the event, which was also attended by Lars Vilks, a Swedish cartoonist behind a controversial caricature of the Prophet Mohammed, and the French ambassador.
In the second attack, the gunmen opened fire outside Copenhagen's main synagogue, killing a 37-year-old Jewish man named as Dan Uzan who was guarding the building. Five police officers were also wounded in the two attacks that stoked fear in the city of about one million people.
'ON THE RADAR'
Police tracked the suspect down to a building in the working class neighbourhood of Norrebro, killing him after an exchange of fire. Police said he was already "on the radar" of the intelligence services and that they were looking into the possibility he had travelled to conflict zones such as Syria and Iraq.
He "may have been inspired by the events that took place in Paris a few weeks ago," Jens Madsen from the Security and Intelligence Service told reporters. He said the man may "generally have been inspired by militant Islamist propaganda issued by IS (Islamic State) and other terror organisations".
A photo was released of the suspect in the cultural centre attack, wearing a black puffer jacket and a maroon balaclava and carrying a black bag.
Police said they believe he had acted alone, but armed officers raided a Copenhagen Internet cafe in one of a series of operations on Sunday, leading away at least two people, possibly under arrest, local media said. The attacks revived European fears about militant violence since the Paris attacks.
Dozens of suspected radical Islamists have been arrested across Europe since mid-January and stocks of weapons and explosives have been uncovered. "It's terrible. It's an attack on the free world," said 84-year-old Joergen Johanssen.
In Germany a carnival parade was cancelled on Sunday because of a "specific threat" of an Islamist attack. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also urged European Jews to move to Israel after Saturday's shooting, echoing a similar call made after the Paris attacks in January.
Four Jews were among a total of 17 people killed in the French capital in attacks on the Charlie Hebdo satirical weekly and a kosher supermarket.
British Prime Minister David Cameron condemned the Copenhagen shootings as an "appalling attack on free speech and religious freedom", while the United States branded them "deplorable".
"We have experienced the ugly taste of fear and powerlessness which terror hopes to create," Thorning-Schmidt told a briefing, saying Denmark was experiencing "a day of sorrow". "We will defend our democracy and we will defend Denmark at any time," she added.
The central area of Copenhagen that is home to both the synagogue and Noerreport station, the country's busiest rail hub, was cordoned off by police carrying machine guns.
Swedish security services said they were on alert for any attempt by a suspect to cross the bridge linking Denmark with Sweden. Increased controls introduced at the border with Germany were relaxed after the killing of the suspected attacker, TV2 reported.
SPECTRE OF CHARLIE HEBDO ATTACK
The windows of the cultural centre were pockmarked by bullet holes, and the BBC released chilling audio of the moment a speaker at the event was interrupted by a barrage of gunfire.
France's ambassador to Denmark, Francois Zimeray, who was unhurt in the attack, told AFP the shooting was an attempt to replicate the Jan 7 attack on Charlie Hebdo, which was targeted because it had published cartoons lampooning the Prophet Mohammed. "Bullets went through the doors and everyone threw themselves to the floor," he said.
The Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten was itself the centre of global controversy after publishing Mohammed cartoons in 2005 that triggered protests across the Muslim world.