Norway killer Breivik inspired by al-Qaeda

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Anders Behring Breivik re-enters the courtroom after a break in the trial on Tuesday (Photo: Lise Åserud/Scanpix)
17:26 CEST+02:00
The gunman behind the Norway massacres said he was inspired by al-Qaeda as he took the stand on Tuesday at his trial, after a judge who called for him to face the death penalty was dismissed.

Right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik said his attacks last year  were aimed at defending "ethnic Norwegians" from rising multiculturalism, and that he "would have done it again."

Insisting "universal human rights" gave him the mandate to carry out his acts, he described himself as a "militant nationalist" and, using the pronoun 'we' to suggest he was part of a larger group, added: "We have drawn from al-Qaeda and militant Islamists."

"You can see al-Qaeda as the most successful militant group in the world," Breivik told the court during questioning on the second day of the trial.

Granted clearance earlier to address the court with a prepared text, Breivik described his killing of 77 people on July 22nd last year as a "preventive" attack to avoid a European culture war with Muslims.

After describing Christians as "a persecuted minority," the 33-year-old asked the court to acquit him while making clear he had no remorse over the bomb attack in central Oslo and shooting spree on a nearby island.

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Breivik said that spending his life in prison or dying for his people would be "the biggest honour."

Breivik had been granted 30 minutes to speak but ended up lecturing for 73 minutes, as chief judge Wenche Elizabeth Arntzen repeatedly urged him to wrap up quickly though the prosecution supported Breivik's wish to go on.

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