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    Death Toll Rises to 91 in Norway Attacks

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    DEATH TOLL NOW AT 93. WHAT HAPPENED NORWAY?

    Post  Admin on Sun Jul 24, 2011 12:45 pm

    DEATH TOLL NOW AT 93. WHAT HAPPENED NORWAY?

    Lawyer: Norway Suspect Wanted A Revolution

    by NPR Staff and Wires

    Mourners gather outside the Domkirken Church in Oslo on Sunday, following a mass for victims of the July 22 government office bombing and shooting spree at a Labour Youth League camp. At least 94 were killed and nearly 100 were wounded in Friday's attacks.

    Jan Johannessen/AFP/Getty Images

    Mourners gather outside the Domkirken Church in Oslo on Sunday, following a mass for victims of the July 22 government office bombing and shooting spree at a Labour Youth League camp. At least 94 were killed and nearly 100 were wounded in Friday's attacks.

    July 24, 2011

    The man blamed for attacks on Norway's government headquarters and a youth retreat that left at least 93 dead said he was motivated by a desire to bring about a revolution in Norwegian society, his lawyer said Sunday.

    A manifesto he published online, which police are poring over and said was posted the day of the attack, ranted against Muslim immigration to Europe and vowed revenge on "indigenous Europeans," whom he accused of betraying their heritage. It added that they would be punished for their "treasonous acts."

    "The calculated cynicism in it is really staggering," Goran Skaalmo, an investigative reporter in Norway, told NPR's Linda Wertheimer. "He calls the operation in Oslo the 'ultimate love gift' at one time. He says in the foreword that to put this whole work together has cost him 370,000 euros. Also, he sees himself as a European hero."

    The lawyer for the 32-year-old Norwegian suspect, Anders Behring Breivik, said Sunday that his client wrote the document alone.

    The treatise detailed plans to acquire firearms and explosives, and even appeared to describe a test explosion: "BOOM! The detonation was successful!!!" It ends with a note dated 12:51 p.m. on July 22: "I believe this will be my last entry."

    That day, a bomb killed seven people in downtown Oslo and, hours later, a gunman opened fire on dozens of young people at a retreat on Utoya island. Police said Sunday that the death toll in the shooting rose to 86.

    That brings the number of victims to 93, with more than 90 wounded. There are still people missing at both scenes. Six hearses pulled up at the shore of the lake surrounding the island on Sunday, as rescuers on boats continued to search for bodies in the water. Body parts remain inside the Oslo building, which housed the prime minister's office.

    Police and his lawyer have said that Breivik confessed to the twin attacks, but denied criminal responsibility for a day that shook peaceful Norway to its core and was the deadliest ever in peacetime. Breivik has been charged with terrorism and will be arraigned on Monday.

    Geir Lippestad, Breivik's lawyer, said his client has asked for an open court hearing "because he wants to explain himself."

    The assaults have rattled largely peaceful Norway, home to the Nobel Prize for Peace and where the average policeman patrolling in the streets doesn't carry a firearm. Norwegians pride themselves on the openness of their society and cherish the idea of free expression. In recent years, the prosperous Nordic nation has opened its arms to thousands of conflict refugees from Pakistan, Iraq and Somalia.

    Police Chief Sveinung Sponheim said a forensics expert from Interpol would join the investigation on Sunday.

    European security officials said Sunday they were aware of increased Internet chatter from individuals claiming they belonged to the Knights Templar group that Breivik refers to in the manifesto. They said they were still investigating claims that Breivik, and other far-right individuals, attended a London meeting of the group in 2002. The two officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak about the investigation.
    Mourners attend a memorial service at Smmerapen Norderhov kirke, following Friday's twin attacks in Oslo, Norway. At least 92 people were killed in the attacks.
    Enlarge Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

    Mourners attend a memorial service at Smmerapen Norderhov kirke, following Friday's twin attacks in Oslo, Norway. At least 92 people were killed in the attacks.

    The officials would also not immediately confirm that they had been aware of Breivik as a potential threat.

    As authorities pursued the suspect's motives, Oslo mourned the victims. Norway's King Harald V and his wife Queen Sonja and Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg crowded into Oslo Cathedral, where the pews were packed, and people spilled into the plaza outside the building. The area was strewn with flowers and candles, and people who could not fit in the grand church huddled under umbrellas in a drizzle.

    The king and queen both wiped tears from their eyes during the service for "sorrow and hope."

    Reporter Terri Schultz called the service "very emotional."

    "The ceremony was called the mass of sadness and hope and people were trying to speak of hope ... but the scene was mostly one of sadness today," she told NPR's Wertheimer.

    After the service, people sobbed and hugged one another in the streets, as many lingered over the memorial of flowers and candles.

    More was coming to light Sunday about the man who police say confessed to a car bomb at government headquarters in Oslo and then, hours later, opening fire on young people at an island political retreat. Both targets were linked to Norway's left-leaning Labor Party, and authorities have said Breivik held anti-Muslim views and posted on Christian fundamentalist websites.

    "He wanted a change in society and, from his perspective, he needed to force through a revolution," Lippestad, the lawyer, told public broadcaster NRK. "He wished to attack society and the structure of society."

    Lippestad said Breivik spent years writing the 1,500-page manifesto entitled, "2083 — A European Declaration of Independence." It was signed "Andrew Berwick." The date was referred to later in the document as the year that coups d'etat would engulf Europe and overthrow the elite he maligns.

    Sponheim, the police chief, said there was no indication whether Breivik had selected his targets or fired randomly on the island. The manifesto vowed revenge on those it accused of betraying Europe.

    "We, the free indigenous peoples of Europe, hereby declare a pre-emptive war on all cultural Marxist/multiculturalist elites of Western Europe. ... We know who you are, where you live and we are coming for you," the document said. "We are in the process of flagging every single multculturalist traitor in Western Europe. You will be punished for your treasonous acts against Europe and Europeans."

    The use of an anglicized pseudonym could be explained by a passage in the manifesto describing the founding, in April 2002 in London, of a group he calls a new Knights Templar. The Knights Templar was a medieval order created to protect Christian pilgrims in the Holy Land after the First Crusade.

    A 12-minute video clip posted on YouTube with the same title as the manifesto featured symbolic imagery of the Knights Templar and crusader kings as well as slides suggesting Europe is being overrun by Muslims. Police could not confirm that Breivik had posted the video, which also featured photographs of him dressed in a formal military uniform and in a wet suit pointing an assault rifle.

    The video was a series of slides that accused the left in Europe of allowing Muslims to overrun the continent: One image showed the BBC's logo with the "C" changed into an Islamic crescent. Another referenced the former Soviet Union, declaring that the end result of the left's actions would be an "EUSSR."

    Police spokesman John Fredriksen confirmed that the manifesto was posted the day of the attacks. In it, Breivik signaled an attack was imminent: "In order to successfully penetrate the cultural Marxist/multiculturalist media censorship, we are forced to employ significantly more brutal and breathtaking operations, which will result in casualties."

    In London, the leader of Ramadhan Foundation, one of Britain's largest Muslim groups, said mosques are being extra vigilant in the wake of the attacks. Mohammed Shafiq told The Associated Press he was talking to other European Muslim leaders and British police about the need to increase security.

    The last 100 pages apparently lay out details of Breivik's social and personal life, including his steroid use and an intention to solicit prostitutes in the days before the attack.

    Also Sunday, police conducted raids in an Oslo neighborhood. Some people were briefly pulled out of buildings to allow for the search of explosives, but were later released. Police spokesman Henning Holtaas said no explosives were found.

    Witnesses at the island youth retreat described the way Breivik lured them close by saying he was a police officer before raising his weapons. People hid and fled into the water to escape the rampage; some played dead.

    While some on the island reported that there was a second assailant and police said they were looking into that, Lippestad, the lawyer, said his client claims to have acted alone.

    Police took 90 minutes from the first shot to reach the island delayed because they did not have quick access to a helicopter and struggled to find a boat once they reached the lake. Breivik surrendered when they reached him.

    Divers continued to comb the lake waters around the island where some 600 young people were attending a Labor Party summer retreat when it came under attack, amid fears people may have drowned while trying to swim to safety.

    Police said the bomb used in the Oslo blast was a mixture of fertilizer and fuel used to blow up a federal building in Oklahoma City in 1995. A farm supply store said Saturday they had alerted police that Breivik bought six metric tons of fertilizer, which can be used in homemade bombs.

    Material from The Associated Press was used in this report

    Source: http://www.npr.org/2011/07/24/138652836/lawyer-norway-suspect-wanted-a-revolution?ps=cprs
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    Death Toll Rises to 91 in Norway Attacks

    Post  Admin on Sat Jul 23, 2011 4:54 am

    Death Toll Rises to 91 in Norway Attacks

    Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/24/world/europe/24oslo.html

    By ELISA MALA and J. DAVID GOODMAN
    Published: July 23, 2011

    OSLO — The Norwegian police on Saturday charged a 32-year-old man, whom they identified as a Christian fundamentalist with right-wing connections, over the bombing of a government center here and a shooting attack on a nearby island that together left at least 91 people dead.

    Emergency workers tended to a woman who had been rescued from Utoya, the island where a gunman opened fire on a camp. More Photos »

    The police said they did not know if the man, identified in the Norwegian press as Anders Behring Breivik, was part of a larger conspiracy. He is being questioned under the country’s terrorism laws and is cooperating with the investigation, they said.

    “We are not sure whether he was alone or had help,” a police official, Roger Andresen, said at a televised press conference, adding: “What we know is that he is right-wing and a Christian fundamentalist.” So far Mr. Breivik has not been linked to any anti-jihadist groups, he said.

    Johan Fredriksen, chief of staff for the Oslo police, said officials “are not surprised” that the attacks had been the work of an ethnic Norwegian, a blond, blue-eyed man, saying “we think about scenarios.”

    Soldiers were arriving in Oslo early Saturday to secure government buildings a day after the attacks, the deadliest on Norwegian soil since World War II.

    The explosions in Oslo, from one or more bombs, turned the tidy Scandinavian capital into a scene reminiscent of terrorist attacks in Baghdad or Oklahoma City, panicking people and blowing out the windows of several government buildings, including one housing the office of the Norwegian prime minister, Jens Stoltenberg, who was unharmed.

    Even as the police locked down a large area of the city after the blasts, the suspect, dressed as a police officer, entered the youth camp on the island of Utoya, about 19 miles northwest of Oslo, a Norwegian security official said, and opened fire. “He said it was a routine check in connection with the terror attack in Oslo,” one witness told VG Nett, the Web site of a national newspaper.

    The police said the suspect had used “a machine pistol” in the attack, but declined to provide further details.

    Of the at least 84 people killed on the island, some were as young as 16, the police said on national television early Saturday. They said the death toll could rise further as they continue to search for bodies in the waters around the island.

    Terrified youths jumped into the water to escape. “Kids have started to swim in a panic, and Utoya is far from the mainland,” said Bjorn Jarle Roberg-Larsen, a Labor Party member who spoke by phone with teenagers on the island, which has no bridge to the mainland. “Others are hiding. Those I spoke with don’t want to talk more. They’re scared to death.”

    Many could not flee in time.

    “He first shot people on the island,” a 15-year-old camper named Elise told The Associated Press. “Afterward he started shooting people in the water.”

    Most of the campers were teenagers but there were also adults on the island, who may have been among the victims.

    Mr. Breivik was captured “by the emergency forces,” police officials said Saturday, but declined to provide further detail about the circumstances of his capture.

    “As for right now, one man has been apprehended, and that’s all I can say,” Mr. Andresen said.The acting police chief, Sveinung Sponheim, said the suspect’s Internet postings “suggest that he has some political traits directed toward the right, and anti-Muslim views, but if that was a motivation for the actual act remains to be seen.”

    He said the suspect had also been seen in Oslo before the explosions. The police and other authorities declined to say what the suspect’s motivations might have been, but many speculated that the target was Mr. Stoltenberg’s liberal government.

    “The police have every reason to believe there is a connection between the explosions and what happened at Utoya,” the police said. They said they later recovered explosives on the island.

    Mr. Breivik had registered a farm-related business in Rena, in eastern Norway, which the authorities said allowed him to order a large quantity of ammonium nitrate fertilizer, an ingredient that can be used to make explosives. Authorities were investigating whether the chemical may have been used in the bombing.

    A Facebook page matching his name and the photo given out by the police was set up just a few days ago. It listed his religion as Christian, politics as conservative. It said he enjoys hunting, the video games World of Warcraft and Modern Warfare 2, and books including Machiavelli’s “The Prince” and George Orwell’s “1984.”

    Deadly explosions shattered windows on Friday at the government headquarters in Oslo, which includes the prime minister’s office. A spokeswoman for Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said he was safe.

    A Twitter account apparently belonging to Mr. Breivik had one item, posted last Sunday: “One person with a belief is equal to the force of 100,000 who have only interests.”

    There was also a Twitter account apparently belonging to Mr. Breivik. It had one item, posted last Sunday: “One person with a belief is equal to the force of 100,000 who have only interests.”

    As the investigations continued, the police asked people to leave the center of Oslo, stay indoors and limit their cellphone use. They also said they would initiate border checks.

    The attacks bewildered a nation better known for its active diplomacy and peacekeeping missions than as a target for extremists.

    In Oslo, office workers and civil servants said that at least two blasts, which ripped through the cluster of modern office buildings around the central Einar Gerhardsen plaza, echoed across the city in quick succession around 3:20 p.m. local time. Giant clouds of light-colored smoke rose hundreds of feet as a fire burned in one of the damaged structures, a six-story office building that houses the Oil Ministry.

    The force of the explosions blew out nearly every window in the 17-story office building across the street from the Oil Ministry, and the streets on each side were strewn with glass and debris. The police combed through the debris in search of clues.

    Mr. Stoltenberg’s office is on the 16th floor in a towering rectangular block whose facade and lower floors were damaged. The Justice Ministry also has its offices in the building.

    Norwegian authorities said they believed that a number of tourists were in the central district at the time of the explosion, and that the toll would surely have been higher if not for the fact that many Norwegians were on vacation and many more had left their offices early for the weekend.

    “Luckily, it’s very empty,” said Stale Sandberg, who works in a government agency a few blocks down the street from the prime minister’s office.

    After the explosions, the city filled with an unfamiliar sense of vulnerability. “We heard two loud bangs and then we saw this yellow smoke coming from the government buildings,” said Jeppe Bucher, 18, who works on a ferry boat less than a mile from the bomb site. “There was construction around there, so we thought it was a building being torn down.”

    He added, “Of course I’m scared, because Norway is such a neutral country.”

    American counterterrorism officials cautioned that Norway’s own homegrown extremists, with unknown grievances, could be responsible for the attacks.

    Initial reports focused on the possibility of Islamic militants, in particular Ansar al-Jihad al-Alami, or Helpers of the Global Jihad, cited by some analysts as claiming responsibility for the attacks. American officials said the group was previously unknown and might not even exist.

    There was ample reason for concern that terrorists might be responsible. In 2004 and again in 2008, the No. 2 leader of Al Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahri, who took over after the death of Osama bin Laden, threatened Norway because of its support of the American-led NATO military operation in Afghanistan.

    Norway has about 550 soldiers and three medevac helicopters in northern Afghanistan, a Norwegian defense official said. The government has indicated that it will continue to support the operations as long as the alliance needs partners on the ground.

    Terrorism specialists said that even if the authorities ultimately ruled out Islamic terrorism as the cause of Friday’s assaults, other kinds of groups or individuals were mimicking Al Qaeda’s brutality and multiple attacks.

    “If it does turn out to be someone with more political motivations, it shows these groups are learning from what they see from Al Qaeda,” said Brian Fishman, a counterterrorism researcher at the New America Foundation in Washington. “One lesson I take away from this is that attacks, especially in the West, are going to move to automatic weapons.”

    Muslim leaders in Norway swiftly condemned the attacks. “This is our homeland, this is my homeland,” said Mehtab Afsar, secretary general of the Islamic Council of Norway. “I condemn these attacks, and the Islamic Council of Norway condemns these attacks, whoever is behind them.”


    Elisa Mala reported from Oslo, and J. David Goodman from New York. Reporting was contributed by Souad Mekhennet, Ravi Somaiya and Matthew Saltmarsh from London; David Jolly and Katrin Bennhold from Paris; Christina Anderson contributed from Stockholm; and Eric Schmitt from Washington.

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