Ex-Islamist: Hamas, Hezbollah involved in Danish cartoon controversy

Ahmed Akkari speaks to a Danish audience, August 2013

A Danish Muslim who played a central role in inciting the riots that followed the 2005-2006 Muhammad cartoon controversy regrets his involvement in the violence, and says it was the result of a conspiracy between Danish imams, Muslim ambassadors, various Muslim countries, and terrorist Islamist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah.

“Denmark became a victim and that has been a cause of much agonizing and soul-searching for me ever since,” Danish Muslim activist Ahmed Akkari said in an interview with Freedom House’s Lars Hvidberg in April.

The interview took place just after the release of Akkari’s book, “My Farewell to Islamism,” in which he describes how he became disillusioned with radical Islam and the violence it spawned in his native Denmark.

The 35-year-old former Danish Islamist, who seven years ago traveled the Muslim world fueling the uproar over newspaper caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, announced last summer that he had done an about-face on the issue and said the Jyllands-Posten newspaper had the right to print them.