Bow-and-Arrow Rampage in Norway Treated as Apparent Terrorist Attack

A 37-year-old man was charged on Thursday in reference to a bow-and-arrow rampage in a small city in Norway that killed 5 individuals in what the authorities mentioned was an obvious act of terrorism.

The Norwegian safety company, recognized by its acronym, PST, mentioned investigators had been nonetheless making an attempt to find out what motivated the attacker to hold out his grisly assault in the city of Kongsberg, about 50 miles southwest of Oslo.

Earlier, the regional police chief mentioned that the authorities had beforehand been in contact with the person over considerations that he had been radicalized.

“We have previously been in contact with him regarding worries about radicalization,” Ole Bredrup Saeverud, the regional police chief, mentioned at a information convention. Asked whether or not the person might need been motivated by excessive non secular ideology, he added, “We don’t know that, but it’s natural to ask the question.”

Four ladies and one man had been killed in the assault on Wednesday night. The attacker, who escaped an preliminary confrontation with the police, unleashed a volley of arrows at obvious strangers in Kongsberg.

The suspect, whose title has not been launched, is a Danish citizen who lived in the city and who had transformed to Islam, officers mentioned on Thursday.

The police chief mentioned that the final time considerations concerning the suspect’s radicalization had been dropped at the police’s consideration was final yr, however he didn’t say who had contacted them with these considerations. He mentioned solely that the police had adopted up on a number of stories.

The suspect is predicted to seem earlier than a decide on Friday, when the particular prices in opposition to him might be made public.

Fredrik Neumann, his court-appointed lawyer, mentioned in an interview that the person was cooperating with the authorities and was present process a psychological well being analysis. He mentioned the person’s mom was Danish and his father Norwegian.

The 5 individuals killed had been aged 50 to 70, Mr. Bredrup Saeverud mentioned, and two individuals injured in the assault had been anticipated to outlive.

It was the worst mass killing in Norway since 2011, when a far-right extremist killed 77 individuals, most of them youngsters at a camp.

On Thursday, the police provided new particulars concerning the assault, which Prime Minister Erna Solberg known as “terrifying.”

The first name to the police got here at 6:12 p.m., with witnesses describing a scene of chaos and unprovoked violence at a grocery store in Kongsberg, a former silver mining village.

One girl informed the native information outlet TV2 that she had seen individuals hiding from a person standing on a road nook with “arrows in a quiver on his shoulder and a bow in his hand.” As he shot the arrows, she mentioned, individuals ran for his or her lives.

Six minutes after the primary name got here into the police, officers confronted the attacker. He fired arrows on the officers and escaped.

At one level, the attacker crossed a bridge spanning the Numedalslagen River and reduce by way of the city, a bucolic space away from the bustle of Oslo.

As he made his manner by way of the city, he attacked individuals seemingly at random, in accordance with the police. One of the injured was an off-duty police officer, and a photograph of him with an arrow in his again was circulated broadly on-line.

The police on Thursday requested the general public to “please stop sharing photos,” saying that doing so was “unwise and disrespectful.”

The police mentioned the attacker had used a second weapon in the rampage, although they didn’t provide additional particulars. But it was the arrows that marked the path of devastation.

At 6:47 p.m., the police detained the suspect — 35 minutes after the primary stories of violence.

A police lawyer, Ann Iren Svane Mathiassen, informed TV2 that the suspect had lived in the city for a number of years.

Murder is uncommon in Norway. In a rustic with a inhabitants of simply over 5 million, there have been 31 murders final yr, most involving individuals who knew one another.

Still, the nation has but to totally reckon with the trauma of the devastating 2011 mass killing.

The Norwegian authorities have expressed concern that not sufficient is being finished to root out right-wing extremism, particularly amongst younger individuals. In July, analysts with the nation’s intelligence companies warned {that a} decade after the 2011 assault, there are younger males and boys who idolize the gunman.

Norway has stringent gun-control legal guidelines, and earlier than that assault the nation had skilled just one mass taking pictures: In 1988, a gunman killed 4 individuals and wounded two others.

In the previous decade, the Norwegian authorities have stepped up their efforts to stamp out terrorism and political violence. That push has included an “action plan” that outlines preventive measures aimed toward recognizing and quelling the form of radicalization that would result in violence.

A key a part of the trouble is reaching out to people who find themselves dropped at the authorities’ consideration, beginning with what is usually referred to in the nation as a “conversation of concern.”

As the fallout from the most recent assault reverberated, a brand new center-left authorities was being sworn in on Thursday morning.

Jonas Gahr Store, the Labour Party chief who was put in as prime minister, mentioned on the ceremony that “what has happened in Kongsberg is terrible.”

He promised a full investigation.

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