Norway Terror Attacks Toll Upped to 87: Norwegian Man Arrested
At least 80 people were killed in a shooting at a youth camp on the Norwegian island of Utoya the second of two attacks blamed on a Norwegian suspect authorities have not identified, police said.
Police confirmed that they had arrested a Norwegian man for the attack on a summer youth camp, and that they believed the same man was responsible for the bombing in central Oslo several hours earlier that claimed at least seven lives.
The 80 dead at the camp was a dramatic increase over an earlier police report that at least 10 had died at the youth camp. Police director Oystein Maeland told reporters many more victims were discovered between the two reports, according to The Associated Press.
With the arrest of a lone Norwegian in the twin bomb and shooting attacks today, officials have all but ruled out any connection to international terrorism.
“We have one person in custody and he will be charged in connection with what has happened,” said Justice Minister Knut Storberget during a Friday evening press conference. “We know that he is Norwegian. That is what we know. I don’t think it’s right from my position to go into details about him.”
TV2, Norway’s largest broadcaster, later identified the suspect as Anders Behring Breivik, 32, describing him as a member of “right-wing extremist groups in eastern Norway.” Norwegian police would not confirm the identity of the suspect.
During the same press conference where Storberget spoke, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg told reporters that it was “too early to say anything certain about the motive.” Justice Minister Storberget said he was not aware of any threats before the two attacks.
Police said that the incidents did not appear to have international connotations, but that the borders of the country were closed.
The man in custody allegedly opened fire at a summer youth camp run by the Labour Party, the political party of both Stoltenberg and Storberget, just hours after explosions ripped through a government building holding Stoltenberg’s office in the capital city of Oslo. According to media reports the suspect had been seen in Oslo earlier in the day. Oslo is 45 minutes from the island of Utoya.
More than 500 people were attending the camp, and most campers were teenagers.
A local police spokesman confirmed to al Jazeera that the suspect had been dressed as a police officer and had said he was at the camp to provide security. Explosives were found on the island after the assault.
Twenty ambulances and four air ambulances were dispatched to the island to pick up the wounded. Some of the campers at the island jumped into the water to attempt to swim to safety.
Stoltenberg was uninjured in the Oslo bombing. He was scheduled to visit the youth camp Saturday.
Source: ABC NEWS