Breivik gives chilling account of massacre

Anders Behring Breivik gave a chilling account on Friday of his shooting massacre on the Norwegian island of Utøya last year, explaining in detail how he calmly executed terrified teens.

Breivik gives chilling account of massacre
Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum/Scanpix

"I lifted my weapon and I shot him in the head," Breivik told the court of his first victim on July 22nd on Utøya, where he shot 69 people dead after first killing eight people in a bombing of government buildings in Oslo.

Before launching into the part of his testimony most dreaded by the many survivors and victims' relatives watching his trial, the 33-year-old right-wing extremist warned people who didn't want to hear the "gruesome" details to leave.

None did.

He went on to explain that when he arrived on the island, dressed as a police officer, he had been reluctant to go through with his plan, saying that the minute he spent trying to decide whether or not to shoot "seemed like a year."

"My whole body tried to fight against … there were a hundred voices in my head saying 'Don't do it! Don't do it!'," he told the court.

But after he lifted his gun and shot down his first victims, an off-duty police officer and the camp administrator, there was no more hesitation.

He said he calmly walked up towards a cafe building, which was full of people and where he killed 11.

"I thought: 'Now I am going into that building and will execute as many people as possible in that building'," he told the court coldly, as survivors and family of his victims cried quietly.

Some then got up and left the room.

Breivik, who on Friday was wearing a black suit and shirt with a silver tie, said he didn't remember everything from the shooting spree.

Yet at times he provided devastatingly detailed descriptions, saying in one room he first shot four or five people in a group in the head.

"I think many are screaming and begging for their lives," he said, sneering slightly as he recalled how some of the people in the room were "paralyzed" and did not run away even when he had to reload his gun.

He then turned to another group on the other side of the room.

"I don't know why there were still people in the room at this time," he said, before adding "I shot them all."

Many of the victims received several bullets to the head and back.

"Some of them were playing dead, that's why I fired so many times."

Survivors and families of victims in the courtroom cried as he recounted each killing. Two women hugged each other as they wiped away tears. Others walked out, unable to take more.

But Tore Sinding Bekkedal, who survived the carnage, listened to every word.

"When you've lived through such a thing, you have a pretty high tolerance for horror," the 23-year-old told AFP.

A lawyer for the families, Frode Elgesem, told reporters: "What perhaps has made this a powerful experience for everybody … is to see the way he
discusses what he has done."

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Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Tuesday 

Find out what's going on in Norway on Tuesday with The Local's short roundup of important news.

Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Tuesday 
Oslo Operahus .Photo by Arvid Malde on Unsplash

Only one in ten Norwegians plan to travel abroad this summer 

Around ten percent of people in Norway are planning to take a holiday abroad this summer, according to a survey carried out by tourism organisation NHO Reiseliv.

Seven out of ten respondents said they still plan to holiday in Norway this year, even if they receive a vaccination before the holidays start.

READ MORE: ‘My arguments didn’t matter’: How I ended up in a hotel quarantine in Norway 

Viken and Vestland are this year’s most popular travel destinations for Norwegians planning a “staycation”. Young people were the most likely to want to remain in Norway this summer. Just under half of those aged between 18 and 29 said they wished to stay in Norway this summer. 

Third of Utøya survivors have received abuse or threats

A third of Utøya survivors have been victims of hate speech or received threats, according to a new survey. 

Three-quarters of respondents said that the reason they received the abuse was linked directly to the Utøya terror attack, the Norwegian Centre for Violence and Traumatic Studies (NKVTS) found. 

The massacre on Utøya was the second of two terror attacks carried out by Anders Breivik on July 22nd, 2011. Of the 69 people who died in the attack, 32 were under the age of 18. 

Fewer in Oslo willing to ditch cars 

A climate survey carried out by the city of Oslo has shown that fewer people than before are willing to cut back on using their cars. The proportion of those who think that Oslo city centre should be car-free has fallen to 45 percent from 52 percent last year. 

READ ALSO: Could Norway introduce mandatory inbuilt car breathalysers 

When asked whether Oslo City Council had gone too far in removing cars from the city centre, almost half said that they believed that this was the case. 

“A change in the attitude around these measures may be due to more people feeling dependent on cars during the pandemic. There has been a lot of debate about measures that have been introduced or are planned to be introduced,” Heidi Sørensen, Director of the Climate Agency, told the Dagsavisen newspaper

Tighter Coronavirus measures in Trondheim 

Gyms, museums and swimming pools have been closed, and alcohol service in hospitality has been stopped in Trondheim. The new measures come barely a week after restrictions were last tightened. 

“We need to shut down most of Trondheim to get control. It is only days since we last tightened measures, but we are in a situation where we must take even stronger action,” Morten Wolden, the municipal director for Trondheim, told state broadcaster NRK.

Norway reports 292 new Covid-19 cases

On Monday, 292 new coronavirus infections were registered in Norway. This is a drop of 52 compared to the seven-day average of 344. 

In Oslo, 48 cases were recorded, an increase of two on the capital’s seven day average of 46. 

The R-number or reproduction rate in Norway is currently 1.0. This means that every ten people that are infected, will, on average, only infect another ten people, indicating that the infection level is stable. 

Total number of Covid-19 cases so far. Source: NIPH