Sunday, July 24, 2011

Suspect wanted to 'change Norwegian society'

Anders Breivik, the man who has confessed to a bombing and shooting spree in Norway that left at least 92 people dead, intended to "radically change Norwegian society" with his attacks, his defence lawyer has said.

Breivik, who is alleged to have carried out the attacks over several hours on Friday, wanted to give a "warning" to the ruling Labour Party that "doomsday would be imminent," said Geir Lippestad, Breivik's lawyer, in an interview with the Verdens Gang newspaper published on Sunday.

Breivik has been arrested under Norway's terrorism laws and will likely face a maximum sentence of 21 years in prison when he is formally charged on Monday.

In a radio interview with the public broadcaster NRK later, Lippestad said that Breivik belongs to an international network of right-wing extremists and would like his hearing on Monday to be open to the media so he can "reveal all".

Breivik had planned his actions for a "long time," Lippestad said.

A man on Crime Scene suspected to be Breivik
Police made two raids in Oslo on Sunday afternoon that they said were in connection with the attacks. One took place in Slette Lokke, in the east of the capital, while the other was in Rodvet, in the north. Several people were arrested and then released, according to reports.

Under interrogation by police, Breivik admitted to both the bombing in Oslo, which killed seven people including two members of Norway's government, and a subsequent shooting spree on the nearby island of Utoya.

The island attack targeted a youth summer camp for the Labour Party and left at least 85 people dead.

"He has said that he believed the actions were atrocious, but that in his head they were necessary," Lippestad said.

It was the deadliest act of violence in the normally peaceful country since World War II.

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