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Norwegian police give go-ahead for autumn Pride parade

Police in Oslo say it will be possible for the Norwegian capital to arrange a Pride parade this autumn, media in the Nordic country reported on Friday.

Norwegian police give go-ahead for autumn Pride parade
Pride flags in Oslo on 2018. Photo by Cecilie Johnsen on Unsplash

Oslo’s Police District chief of staff Harald Nilssen told newspaper Aftenposten that police believed it would be possible to go ahead with the festival later in 2022.

“Oslo Police District has a lot of experience with preparing different events. Most of the work is done in advance with dialogue and preventative work,” Nilssen said via email.

“In addition to this we allocate resources in accordance with what is needed,” the senior police officer also said in the mail to Aftenposten.

Earlier this week, the director of the Oslo Pride, Kristin Haugsevje, event said it was unclear whether a parade could take place this autumn due to the current threat level against the event.

Oslo Pride was cancelled on June 25th after a mass shooting in the centre of the city the night before in which two people were killed and 21 injured.

A subsequent LGBT solidarity event in Oslo was also cancelled over police fears of copycat attacks.

READ ALSO: Oslo shooting suspect remanded in custody for four weeks

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CRIME

Norwegian police say second suspect involved in deadly Oslo shooting

Norwegian police said on Friday they had issued an international arrest warrant for a second suspect in a June shooting that killed two people near a gay bar in central Oslo.

Norwegian police say second suspect involved in deadly Oslo shooting

The suspect is a Norwegian in his 40s who had already shown up on police radar and is suspected of “complicity in a terrorist act”, Borge Enoksen, a police official, told a press conference. Police think the man is currently abroad, but did not provide any more details.

According to TV2, the suspect is Arfan Bhatti, a 44-year-old Islamist with prior convictions who is thought to be in Pakistan, which does not have an extradition treaty with Norway.

On June 25th, Zaniar Matapour, 43, is alleged to have opened fire near a gay bar in central Oslo in the early morning hours, amid celebrations linked to the city’s Pride festival.

The shooting killed two men, aged 54 and 60, and wounded 21 others, with Matapour quickly arrested. Matapour, a Norwegian of Iranian origin, had been known to Norway’s PST intelligence service since 2015, with concerns about his radicalisation and membership of “an extremist Islamist network”.

Norway’s domestic intelligence service has previously described the attack as “an act of Islamist terrorism” and said Matapour had “difficulties with his mental health”. He is currently at a psychiatric hospital for court-ordered mental evaluation.

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