Published: 05 Jun 2012 09:31 GMT+02:00 | Print version
Updated: 05 Jun 2012 09:31 GMT+02:00
Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in twin attacks in Norway last year, on Monday detailed the childhood incidents he said had shaped his attitude towards Muslims.
Breivik told the court on the 30th day of his trial of one occasion when a Turkish diplomat, the father of one of his friends, had destroyed his bicycle because he had offended him. He was seven years old at the time, he said.
He went over a string of other incidents that either he or people he knew had experienced, ranging from slaps, fights, attempted thefts and three cases of rape.
According to Verdens Gang newspaper however, the girls who he said had been subjected to these assaults had all denied his account in interviews with the police.
"Taken separately, all these episodes are not so serious," Breivik told the court, but added that together they contributed to shaping his views of Muslims.
What was often a common thread in these incidents was that the state was giving Muslim families housing in Oslo's upmarket east, he claimed.
Breivik denounced the media, saying they failed to report such incidents.
Asked if he had had positive experiences with Muslims, he confirmed that he had.
"They are very loyal," he said.
"The code of honour is very important for them: they are the first ones to help if there is a fight."
Breivik said he had tried to change Norway through democratic means, but that in 2006, frustrated at his lack of progress, he had started developing his plans for last year's massacre, in which 77 people died.
On July 22nd 2011, Breivik first bombed a government building in Oslo, killing eight people, before going on a shooting rampage on the nearby island of Utøya where the ruling Labour Party's youth wing was hosting a summer camp.
He killed 69 people in his island massacre, most of them teens, with the youngest having just celebrated her 14th birthday.
Far from denying his actions Breivik has sought to explain the right-wing extremist ideology he says prompted the killings.
And in court on Monday he argued that his attacks were just the latest in a series of politically motivated acts of violence in Norway, further evidence, he said, that his attacks were not necessarily the sign of an unsound mind.
Breivik, 33, is intent on proving his sanity to ensure that his ideology -- described as a crusade against multiculturalism and a pending "Muslim invasion" of Norway and Europe -- not be written off as the rantings of a lunatic.
He also told the court the role that the internet had played in radicalizing him.
"It is on the internet that I made contact with the nationalist activists who I met," he said.
"On the net, you can perhaps get along even better (with people) than in real life," he added.
If he is found sane, he faces a 21-year jail term which could be extended indefinitely if he is still considered a threat to society. If he is found insane he could receive closed psychiatric care, possibly for life.