Breivik: ‘No reason’ to appeal if I’m found sane

Anders Behring Breivik told an Oslo court on Thursday that he would not appeal a guilty verdict if the judges deem him sane enough to be criminally responsible for his actions which left 77 people dead in twin terror attacks last year.

Breivik: 'No reason' to appeal if I'm found sane
Photo: NTB scanpix

"There is absolutely no reason to appeal if I am declared criminally accountable," said the 33-year-old rightwing extremist who wants to be found sane — even if it means facing a long prison sentence — so that his Islamophobic ideology will not be considered the ravings of a lunatic.

Breivik has confessed to the twin attacks but has refused to plead guilty, insisting they were "cruel but necessary" to stop the ruling Labour Party's "multicultural experiment" and the "Muslim invasion" of Norway and Europe.
On the 24th day of his 10-week trial, Breivik said he believed he had succeeded in using his court case to spread his ideology to the masses.
"My remarks were not broadcast live on television but at least the transcript was published," he said.
The question of Breivik's sanity is a focal point of the trial.
A first psychiatric evaluation conducted last year by two court-appointed psychiatrists found Breivik to be psychotic, suffering from "paranoid schizophrenia" and therefore not responsible for his actions.
That diagnosis would likely lead to him being sent to a closed mental ward.
But a second opinion concluded that Breivik was sane enough to be held responsible.
If found of sound mind, he would likely face Norway's maximum 21-year prison sentence, which can be extended for as long as he is considered a threat to society.
On July 22nd, 2011, Breivik gunned down 69 people on the island of Utøya most of them teenagers who were attending a Labour Party youth camp, while another eight died when he bombed a government building in Oslo earlier the same day.
Ultimately it will be up to the five judges to decide whether he is sane when they hand down their verdict in July.
The judges will base their decision on the psychiatric evaluations and testimony expected in mid-June from the authors of those reports, as well as other psychiatric experts
"The question of an appeal lies therefore in the hands of the judges," Breivik said Thursday, appearing to put pressure on the court to find him sane.
In brief remarks made to the court, Breivik also explained his apparent lack of emotion and reactions during the often harrowing testimony from the survivors of the Utøya shooting massacre.
"It has been said that I show no emotion in court but it is worth noting that I am putting a lot of energy into that," he said, adding that he was in reality "almost mentally injured" by the testimony.
At the start of his trial in mid-April, Breivik told the court he had trained extensively to control his emotions as part of his preparation for the attacks and to enable him to sit through the ensuing trial without "falling apart."
His lawyer Geir Lippestad confirmed that Breivik had said he would not lodge an appeal but left some room for doubt nonetheless.
"That's what he says," Lippestad told AFP, before adding: "But we have to wait and see what he will do."
Breivik's comments came as a debate simmered over the validity of the two psychiatric evaluations.
A panel of forensic experts tasked with verifying that the evaluations were properly conducted approved the first one with no remarks.
But the diagnosis sparked a controversy, with many Norwegians stunned to hear that a man who methodically planned the massacres in minute detail for years was insane and not responsible for his actions.
The court therefore ordered a second opinion which concluded that he was sane, but the panel of experts made ambiguous remarks about the quality of that evaluation.
The court on Thursday officially asked the panel to clarify its position on the second opinion before June 1st.

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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