2011 Norway attacks - Breivik
The 2011 Norway attacks were two sequential lone wolf terrorist attacks against the government, the civilian population, and a Workers' Youth League (AUF)-run summer camp in the Oslo region on 22 July 2011, claiming a total of 77 lives.
The first was a car bomb explosion in Oslo within Regjeringskvartalet, the executive government quarter of Norway, at 15:25:22 (CEST). The bomb was made from a mixture of fertiliser and fuel oil and placed in the back of a car. The car was placed in front of the office block housing the office of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and other government buildings.The explosion killed eight people and injured at least 209 people, twelve of them seriously.
The second attack occurred less than two hours later at a summer camp on the island of Utøya in Tyrifjorden, Buskerud. The camp was organized by the AUF, the youth division of the ruling Norwegian Labour Party (AP). A gunman dressed in a homemade police uniform and showing false identification gained access to the island and subsequently opened fire at the participants, killing 69 of them, and injuring at least 110, 55 of them seriously; the 69th victim died in a hospital two days after the massacre. Among the dead were personal friends of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and the stepbrother of Norway's crown princess Mette-Marit.
It was the deadliest attack in Norway since World War I Iand a survey found that on average, 1 in 4 Norwegians knew "someone affected by the attacks". The European Union, NATO and several countries around the world expressed their support for Norway and condemned the attacks. On 13 August 2012, Norway's prime minister received the Gjørv Report which concluded that Norway's police could have prevented the bombing of central Oslo and caught the gunman faster at Utøya, and that more security and emergency measures to prevent further attacks and "mitigate adverse effects" should have been implemented on 22 July.
The Norwegian Police arrested Anders Behring Breivik, a 32-year-old Norwegian right-wing extremist, on Utøya island and charged him with both attacks. The trial against him took place between 16 April and 22 June 2012 in Oslo District Court, where Breivik admitted to having carried out the actions he was accused of, but denied criminal guilt and claimed the defense of necessity (jus necessitatis). On 24 August 2012 Breivik was convicted as charged and sentenced to 21 years of preventive detention in prison, which at the end can be repeatedly extended for 5 years as long as he is considered a threat to society.
Preparation for the attacks
Breivik claims to have begun the planning of terrorist acts in 2002, at the age of 23. Anders Behring Breivik had participated for years in debates in Internet forums and spoken against Islam and immigration. He was preparing for the attacks from at least as early as 2009, though he concealed his violent intentions.
Arming in Norway and through the Internet Originally, Breivik intended to try to obtain weapons in Germany or Serbia if his mission in Prague failed. The Czech disappointment led him to procure his weapons through legal channels. He decided to obtain a semi-automatic rifle and a Glock pistol legally in Norway, noting that he had a "clean criminal record, hunting license, and two guns (a Benelli Nova12 gauge pump-action shotgun and a .308 bolt-action rifle) already for seven years", and that obtaining the guns legally should therefore not be a problem.
Upon returning to Norway, Breivik obtained a legal permit for a .223-caliber Ruger Mini-14 semi-automatic carbine, ostensibly for the purpose of hunting deer. He bought it in late 2010 for €1,400 ($2000). He wanted to purchase a7.62x39mm Ruger Mini-30 semi-automatic carbine, but did however for unknown reasons buy the Mini-14.
Getting a permit for the pistol proved more difficult, as he had to demonstrate regular attendance at a sport shooting club. He also bought ten 30-round magazines for the rifle from a United States supplier, and six magazines for the pistol (including four 30-round magazines) in Norway. From November 2010 to January 2011 he went through 15 training sessions at the Oslo Pistol Club, and by mid-January his application to purchase a Glock pistol was approved.
Breivik claimed in his manifesto that he bought 300 g. of sodium nitrate from a Polish shop for €10 in December 2010, in order to make a bomb fuse. In March 2011, he legally bought 100 kg of chemicals from a small Internet-basedWrocław company. The Polish ABW interviewed the company owner on 24 July 2011. Breivik's Polish purchases initially led to him being put on the watch list of the Norwegian intelligence, which did not act because they did not believe it was relevant.
He had also planned a last religious service (in Frogner Church, Oslo) before the attack.
On 18 May 2009 Behring Breivik created a sole proprietorship called Breivik Geofarm, a company established under a fictitious purpose (the cultivation of vegetables, melons, roots and tubers). The real purpose was to gain access tochemicals and materials, especially fertilizer that could be used for the production of explosives without arousing suspicion.
The place of business was given as Åmot in Hedmark. On 4 May 2011 Breivik purchased six tonnes (13,000 lb) of fertilizer through Geofarm at Felleskjøpet, three tonnes (6,600 lb) of ammonium nitrate and three tonnes of calcium ammonium nitrate. According to neighbours, all the fertilizer was stored in his barn. After conducting a reconstruction of the bomb with equivalent amount of fertilizer on the farm in Åmot, police and bomb experts concluded that the bomb had been 950 kilograms, about the same size as the one used in the 2002 Bali bombings. Afterwards there was significant debate in Norway about how an amateur could acquire such substantial amounts of fertilizer and in addition manufacture and place such a lethal weapon in the middle of Regjeringskvartalet all by himself. The conclusion by Felleskjøpet was that there is no legislation to keep agricultural businesses from buying as much fertilizer as they like, and that there was nothing suspicious about Breivik's purchase. This was confirmed by the director of theNorwegian Police Security Service, Janne Kristiansen, who stated "not even Stasi could have prevented this attack".
The company listed at least two Swedish employees at the social networking site Facebook, but it is uncertain whether these people existed.
In April 2011 he reported moving from Oslo to Vålstua farm in the municipality of Åmot, about 9 kilometres (6 mi) south of the community centre Rena, on the east side of Glomma. His agricultural company was run from the farm, and gave him access to ingredients for explosives.
His 950-kilogram (2,090 lb) car bomb exploded in central Oslo on 22 July 2011 where it killed eight people. He had between 1,000 and 1,500 kilograms (2,200 and 3,300 lb) additional material that was left on the farm and could be used for construction of a third bomb.
Beside visiting firing ranges and countries with relaxed gun laws to sharpen his skill, Breivik's manifesto says that he made use of the video game Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 as a training aid while using World of Warcraft as a cover for his extended period of isolation. He also said that he honed his shooting skills using an in-game holographic sight similar to the one he used during the attacks.
Approximately one and a half hours after the Oslo explosion, Breivik, dressed in a police uniform and presenting himself as "Martin Nilsen" from the Oslo Police Department, boarded the ferry MS Thorbjørn at Utøykaia in Tyrifjorden, a lake some 40 kilometres (25 mi) northwest of Oslo, to the island of Utøya, the location of the Norwegian Labour Party's AUFyouth camp, which is organised there every summer and was attended by approximately 600 teenagers.
When Breivik arrived on the island, he presented himself as a police officer who had come over for a routine check following the bombing in Oslo. He was met by Monica Bøsei, the camp leader and island hostess. Bøsei probably became suspicious and contacted Trond Berntsen, the security officer on the island, before Breivik killed them both. He then signalled and asked people to gather around him before pulling weapons and ammunition from a bag and indiscriminately firing his weapons, killing and wounding numerous people.
He first shot people on the island and later started shooting at people who were trying to escape by swimming across the lake. Survivors on the island described a scene of terror. In one example, 21-year-old survivor Dana Barzingi described how several victims wounded by Breivik pretended to be dead to survive, but he later came back and shot them again. He did relent in his executions on some occasions: first, when an 11-year-old boy who had just lost his father (Trond Berntsen) during the shooting, stood up against him and said he was too young to die; and later, when a 22-year-old male begged for his life.
Some witnesses on the island were reported to have hidden in the undergrowth, and in lavatories, communicating by text message to avoid giving their positions away to the gunman. The mass shooting reportedly lasted for around an hour and a half, ending when a police special task force arrived and the gunman surrendered, despite having ammunition left, at 18:35. It is also reported that the shooter used hollow-point or frangible bullets which increase tissue damage. Breivik repeatedly shouted "You are going to die today, Marxists!"
The island's manager, Monica Bøsei, was one of the victims. Her husband and one of her two daughters were also present, but escaped with their lives. The youngest victim, Sharidyn Svebakk-Bøhn of Drammen, was 14 years old.
16-year-old Andrine Bakkene Espeland of Sarpsborg was the last victim, nearly one hour after the shooting began.
Local residents in a flotilla of motorboats and fishing dinghies sailed out to rescue the survivors who were pulled out shivering and bleeding from the water and picked up from hiding places in the bushes and behind rocks around the island's shoreline. Some survived by pretending to be dead. Several campers, especially those who knew the island well, swam to the island's rocky west side and hid in the caves which are only accessible from the water. Others were able to hide away on the secluded Kjærlighetsstien ("love path"). Forty-seven of the campers sought refuge in Skolestua("the School House") together with personnel from the Norwegian People's Aid. Although Breivik shot two bullets through the door, he did not get through the locked door, and the people inside this building survived.
Two ethnic Chechen teenagers Movsar Dzhamayev, 17, and Rustam Daudov, 16, who were at the island said later that they were reminded of the war in their native Chechnya. "I have seen people being shot before in my country when I was small and had flashbacks," Dzhamayev said. But after speaking to his father by cell phone, he pulled himself together. "My dad said, 'Attack the perpetrator and do it properly,'" he said. With a third unidentified friend, the teens armed themselves with stones and returned to the scene only to witness Breivik killing another teenager. "We stood three meters from him and wanted to beat him, but then he shot one of our friends in the head. So we just threw the stones and ran for our lives," Daudov said.
The teenagers said that they had decided that it was too difficult to stop the gunman. They discovered a cave-like opening in a rock where they managed to hide 23 children from Breivik. Dzhamayev, who kept guard outside, also dragged three youngsters from the lake who were close to drowning.
Former prime minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, whom Breivik said he hated and, in a pun on the (more or less ironic) epithet Landsmoderen – "mother of the nation", referred to in his writings as landsmorderen – "murderer of the nation", had been on the island earlier in the day to give a speech to the camp. After the attack Breivik stated that he originally wanted to target her specifically; but because of delays related to the renovation of Oslo Central railway station, she was already gone when the shooting started.
Rescue and emergency response
The first shot was fired at 17:22. The emergency medical services were informed about the shooting two minutes later. One minute after that the police in Oslo were informed. They immediately tried to reach Utøya as quickly as possible, but did not have a helicopter that could take them straight to the island. By 17:30, the anti-terror police in Oslo (the Emergency Response Unit) were on the way to Utøya.
One of the first to arrive on the scene was Marcel Gleffe, a German resident of Ski staying at Utvika Camping on the mainland. Recognizing gunshots, he piloted his boat to the island and began throwing life-jackets to young people in the water, rescuing as many as he could in four or five trips, after which the police asked him to stop. The Daily Telegraphcredited him with saving up to 30 lives.
Another forty were saved by Hege Dalen and Toril Hansen, a married couple holidaying in the area. Dalen was helping from land while Hansen and a neighbor camper made several trips to rescue people in the water. Several dozen more were rescued by Kasper Ilaug, who made three trips to the island. Ilaug, a local resident, received a telephone call that "something terrible" was happening on Utøya and requesting help. He initially thought the call was a prank, but acted anyway. Altogether, some 150 who swam away from the island were pulled out of the fjord by campers on the opposite shore.
The anti-terror police reached the meeting point at 18:09, but had to wait a few minutes for a boat to take them across. They reached Utøya at 18:25. When confronted by the heavily armed police on the island, the gunman initially hesitated for a few seconds. When an officer yelled "surrender or be shot" he laid down his weapons.
Anders Breivik called the 112 emergency phone number at least twice to surrender, at 18:01 and 18:26, and continued killing people in between. The police say Breivik hung up both times; they tried to call him back but did not succeed.
When the police arrived at the scene, they were met by survivors begging the officers to throw away their weapons, as they were afraid that the men in uniforms would again open fire on them.
During the attack, 69 people were killed, and of the 517 survivors, 66 were wounded.
Shortage of transport capacity
The Norwegian police do not have helicopters suitable for transporting groups of police for an airdrop. The one they have is useful only for surveillance and the helicopter crew was on vacation. The only helicopters available to the Oslo-based unit were military ones parked 60 kilometres (37 mi) south of the capital at Moss Airport in Rygge, and thus the special unit had to reach the location by car.
When the local police arrived at Utøykaia, less than 30 minutes after the first shot was fired, they could not find a suitable boat to reach the island. They were then ordered to observe and report.
AUF's own ferry, MS Thorbjørn, was used by Breivik to go to Utøya. Shortly after the first shot was fired, nine people were leaving the island on the ferry, among them the AUF leader Eskil Pedersen. They feared there might be more terrorists in the area and navigated the ferry 2.7 kilometres (1.7 mi) to the north. Hence the ferry was not available to the police when they arrived at Utøykaia, the normal ferry landing on the mainland.
The police therefore had to use their own rigid-hulled inflatable boat (RIB). The day of the event, this boat was located in Hønefoss, and had to be transported to the lake and launched before it could be used. When the anti-terror police boarded the RIB it took on some water and after a few hundred meters, the engine stopped, probably due to water in the fuel. Two minutes later they took over a civilian boat that was sent to assist them. The episode was captured on video. A minute or two after the video ends, a faster civilian boat arrived to help. Four police officers from the anti-terror police boarded the boat. Not to waste any more time the civilian couple took the police to Utøya.
Some have criticized the police for not using a helicopter, for not immediately getting into small boats, and for endangering the couple who drove the civilian boat.
Arrest of innocent survivor
On arriving in Utøya, the police arrested, in addition to Breivik, Anzor Djoukaev, an innocent 17-year-old survivor who represented the Akershus branch of AUF. The youth was reportedly stripped naked and locked up in a jail cell, located only meters away from the cell housing the self-confessed killer. The victim, who as a child had witnessed mass murders in Chechnya, was suspected of being an accomplice because his haircut was different from that shown on hisidentity document, and because he did not react to the carnage with the same tears and hysteria as most of the other survivors. He was kept in custody for seventeen hours. Barrister Harald Stabell criticized the police for failing to contact the youth's family, who feared he was killed, and for interrogating the victim without a lawyer present.
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