Posts Tagged ‘Knights Templar’
By Tom Chivers, Raf Sanchez, Chris Irvine
9:40PM BST 25 Jul 2011
21.40 That’s it for tonight’s coverage. For all the latest coverage on Anders Behring Breivik and the fallout of the attacks on Oslo and Utoya, please visit The Telegraph’s Norway page.
Breivik was understood to have met leaders of the EDL in March last year when he came to London for the visit of Geert Wilders, the Dutch Right-wing politician.
Daryl Hobson, who organises EDL demonstrations, said Breivik, who told police there were “two more cells” ready to follow him, had met members of the group.
Another senior member of the EDL told The Telegraph Breivik had been in regular contact with its members via Facebook, and had a “hypnotic” effect on them.
21.35 British police are investigating a cell of right-wing radicals known as the Knights Templar, as it emerged that a blogger using the name Lionheart called for a revival of the movement. Duncan Gardham and John-Paul Ford Rojas write.
21.28 An author cited in the Breivik’s 1,500-page manifesto has expressed regret that her writing might have served to inspire him.
Gisele Littman, who writes under the name Bat Ye’or, wrote a book in 2005 called ‘Eurabia: the Euro-Arab Axis’, which explores the relationship between EUropean and Muslim countries.
She told the Associated Press:
Of course I regret if this man took inspiration from what I wrote or from what other writers wrote.
As an insane person he should have been treated before, and I am greatly saddened for all the young innocents who tragically lost their lives, and for their families.
21.12 Andrew Gilligan writes that the threat of Islamist attacks far outweighs that from loners with no political clout.
Clearly, the number killed by Anders Behring Breivik is greater than in any single Islamist terror attack in the UK; and equally clearly, the murderer was motivated by hatred of Muslims. This cannot, however, have been his main motive, or he surely would have taken his assault rifle to an Oslo mosque, rather than an island of white teenagers. To even suggest equivalence between years of Islamist terror and the far Right, based on a single, awful case, is deeply dangerous and false.
21.10 David Cameron has demanded an urgent review of the threat from far-Right extremist groups in Britain in the wake of the Norwegian attacks. The Telegraph’s Robert Winnett has the story in full.
20.45 A full report from The Telegraph’s Nick Meo and John Bingham, both in Oslo, on Anders Behring Breivik coming to the attention of intelligence services in March after he bought a large quantity of chemicals from a Polish company.
20.25 A survivor of the Utoya Island massacre, Adrian Pracon speaks out on his terrifying ordeal. Mr Pracon was on the holiday island when he struck. He escaped, having been shot in the shoulder by lying under abandoned clothes and one of the bodies.
20.22 Anders Behring Breivik in his own words: a Q&A in his manifesto in which he describes himself as a “laid-back type” and “quite tolerant on most issues”. He also says he would most like to meet The Pope or Vladimir Putin.
20.10 More on Anders Breivik’s father, this time a video courtesy of Telegraph TV in which he tells Norwegian TV that he will never return to Norway.
20.03 Jens Stoltenberg earlier addressed the throngs who poured onto Oslo’s streets, as well as Crown Prince Haakon.
Crown Prince Haakon said:
Tonight the streets are filled with love… Those who were in the government district and on Utoeya were targets for terror. But it has affected us all.
And Mr Stoltenberg:
Evil can kill a person but it cannot kill a people.
20.00 Glenn Beck, the leading right-wing American broadcaster, has prompted outrage after comparing the teenage victims of the Utoya Island massacre to the Hitler Youth.
Beck said that the Labour party youth camp on the island of Utoya, where 68 people were murdered, bore “disturbing” similarities to the Nazi party’s notorious juvenile wing.
Torbjørn Eriksen, a former press secretary to Jens Stoltenberg, Norway’s prime minister, described the comment as “a new low” for the broadcaster, who has frequently been forced to apologise for offensive remarks.
19.55 More pictures coming from the vigil in Oslo, with thousands carrying flowers as a tribute to the victims.
Thousands carried flowers as a tribute to the victims
And this one shows the scale of people who took part. Truly powerful:
People in Oslo take part in the ‘rose march’ for the victims of Anders Behring Breivik
19.44 More from Janne Kristiansen. Here is what she had to say about the incident:
In March, we received … a list of 50-60 names and his name was on it because he spent 120 krone (15 euros or 22 dollars) at a business in Poland, the head of the PST, which reports directly to the ministry of justice, told Norway’s public television channel NRK.
This business was under surveillance because it was selling other chemical products…
We don’t have the right to put people’s names on the register just like that but we checked if we had anything on these people, if any of them could be connected to any other intelligence we had but we had absolutely nothing on Behring Breivik.
19.00 More on those earlier reports that the Norwegian Police Security Service had Breivik on list of people who bought chemicals from a Polish man in March.
This has apparently now been confirmed by Janne Kristiansen, head of the service, who has told TV channel NRK that Breivik was flagged but the incident was too insignificant to warrant a follow-up.
Meanwhile in Oslo, crowds continue to come to the vigil, the Observer’s Mark Townsend reports:
From where I stand, for a mile along Oslo’s central st, a huge tide of people approaches, almost all are carrying a single rose.less than a minute ago via Twitter for BlackBerry® Favorite Retweet ReplyMark Townsend
18.30 Latest estimates, from Norwegian news network NRK, place numbers at the vigil at 150,000.
18.19 Eskil Pederson, leader of the Labour party youth wing and a survivor of the Utoya island massacre, is among those speaking to the vigil in Oslo.
Never have we felt such togetherness, with this togetherness we shall continue to fight for the values that are so important for all of Norway … Norway shall not hate and we are not revenging … We are to stand together in grief, hoping and believing in the same values … He used weapons; we are using the right to vote in elections this autumn and that way participate in democracy … He took some of the most beautiful roses we had but he cannot stop the spring from coming.
17.54 Further quotes from Jens Breivik, the father of Anders:
I think that ultimately he should have taken his own life rather than kill so many people. I will never have any more contact with him. [Yes, these are strong words from a father about his son] but when I think of what happened, I’m filled with despair. I still don’t understand how something like this could happen. No-one normal could do that.
17.48 An astonishing number of people have turned out in Oslo for the vigil in memory of the attacks. Estimates on Twitter of 100,000 attendees, but no official estimates yet. Most people are holding flowers:
17.45 Reverend Olav Fykse Tveit, the head of the World Council of Churches, has condemned Breivik for citing Christianity as a justification for his massacre:
It’s important to say to all Muslims wherever they are, in Europe or elsewhere in the world, that these actions in no way can express what is our Christian faith and our Christian values. It is blasphemous to make that kind of connection.
We as Christians need to be aware of how our faith and our religion can be abused. This event shows how important it is that we continue this work more than ever.
17.37 Video: the Oslo court orders an investigation into the “terror cells” claim:
17.15 “Thousands and thousands” have turned up for the march to remember the victims in Kristiansand, says Ketil Stensrud of Radio NRJ Kristiansand:
17.10 There have been many reports that the maximum prison sentence is 21 years in Norway. That is the case, but if a convict poses a danger to society, they can be held even after their sentence is up – hence Breivik’s statement that he never expects to be released.
17.09 A bit more from the police on why their death-toll estimates were off, and what to expect later:
This figure could still go up and the search (for bodies) is ongoing. On Friday afternoon the situation was very chaotic. The police had to put the accent on helping the wounded and providing emergency care, it’s possible that victims were counted several times.
17.02 Cecilia Malmstroem, the EU’s Commissioner for Home Affairs, has attacked European leaders for remaining silent on xenophobia in the continent ahead of the Norway attacks. She said on her blog:
Sadly there are too few leaders today who stand up for diversity and for the importance of having open, democratic and tolerant societies where everybody is welcome. This manifesto is a product of a very disturbed man, but unfortunately we recognise some of these sentiments in Europe today.
I have many times expressed my concern over xenophobic parties who build their unfortunately quite successful rhetoric on negative opinions on Islam and other so-called threats against society.
16.59 Our data reporter Conrad Quilty-Harper has put together this graphic of Breivik’s papers:
16.45 Anders Behring Breivik is prepared to spend the rest of his life in prison, the police spokesman has said. He remained calm during questioning and appeared “unaffected” by his actions.;
16.36 Nick Meo, one of our foreign correspondents, emails from Oslo:
Hundreds of people, many carrying roses, are making their way on foot from the suburbs in the west of the city into the centre for tonight’s march. I’ve watched a steady flow for at least half an hour now along a road at a point about half a mile away – they seem to prefer walking to taking the tram. Many are alone, making their way into the city after work. They are not being put off by spitting rain and black clouds. Their mood is very calm. People don’t look particularly sad or angry, and many are chatting, although there are some serious faces.
People in Oslo still can’t believe that, as one old man told me today, “there was a Norwegian with so much hate in him”. One woman on her way to the march, Ingeborg Olsen, a civil servant aged 45, said: “I have felt physically sick for two days. This is nice safe Norway, things like this don’t happen here.” She wanted to lay her rose at the end of the march in memory of the dead, she wasn’t sure where exactly.
16.31 Hans-Inge Langø, a security researcher, tweets that “Norwegian Police Security Service had Breivik on list of people who bought chemicals from Polish man in March. Police checked Breivik out, but found no reason to take precautionary measures”. There’s more here: link in Norwegian.
16.25 There have been no arrests in Poland about this matter, they say.
16.23 The police won’t release the number of people currently missing to avoid “confusion” around the death tolls. Boats and divers are still searching the deep waters around Utoya.
16.16 Are there any more details on the two “cells”, the spokesman is asked by a journalist. The prosecutor says he will answer that questions:
The reason why we closed the court today was so as not to destroy any evidence. The reasoning is that we can’t quite rule out that someone else was involved. This is partly based on the information that there are two other cells. I cannot, due to the investigation, give any more information about whether these are two cells that he is operating or that he is working with. He has explained that he has operated in a cell, and that there are two other cells, or individuals.
16.14 Norwegian society will still be open and therefore vulnerable, he says. “A life without risks is not really living”, he says, if I understood the translation correctly.
16.11 “Now it is important that Oslo life gets back to normal”, the spokesman says. But there will be areas closed around the Government quarter for days or even weeks, he warns.
16.08 So a total death toll of 76, down from 93. Now the police are working to bring the bodies from Utoya and to identify them all. “There is no way that we can do this any quicker than we are at the moment”, he says. “It is going according to plan, but it is very time-consuming, gathering information from families.” They hope to have a final figure by Thursday.
16.06 “It is a small piece of good news”, says the police spokesman of the Utoya revision, now that fewer families are dealing with the loss of loved ones.
16.04 The police press conference is under way. Their first piece of information is that the number of deaths in Utoya has been revised downwards, from 86 to 68. They warn that the number may go back up, as the police are still searching the island. They say that the number of dead in the Oslo bombing has gone up from seven to eight, although this too may change.
16.01 Steve Futterman reports on Twitter: “Norway newspaper VG says Anders Breivik was with a 2nd person when he tried to buy fertilizer earlier this year. They seemed to be friends”.
15.52 Markus Thorr, a Norwegian video journalist, tweets:
MThorr Even though it was closed Behring Breivik took the opportunity to quote his manifesto in court today. The judge let him go on for a few minutes before he stopped him on the grounds of there not being anything that could hinder injailment.
15.41 As Neil Tweedie said earlier, there will be a candlelit vigil tonight in Oslo. Ali Bunkall of Sky says that “thousands” are expected to attend.
15.31 Breivik’s father has been talking to Norway’s TV2 – the full interview will be aired at 17.30BST. I’m getting this via Ketil Stensrud on Twitter:
The last thing he should have done, instead of killing so many people, is to kill himself. I’ll never ever have any contact with him again [...] no normal person would every do anything like this.
Jens Breivik, father of Anders. (Photo: REX FEATURES)
15.14 Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg is talking on the BBC. He’s asked about whether there were security failings:
The police investigation is ongoing, and hopefully we will know much more after the inquiry. So far the police believe that this was one man doing it alone. When the police investigations are finished we will have a much better basis for knowing if we could have done anything better. As far as I know, the police don’t have any records of him being a threat or a dangerous person. One possible explanation is that if he acted alone, it was more difficult to discover and see and know about beforehand.
Asked about a possible international connection:
There are still lots of people missing and people wounded in hospital, and the police investigation is ongoing. This is so serious, it would be wrong of me to start speculating on reasons and motives. When the police investigation is finished, we will know much more about any international connection.
On whether Norwegian society will become less open after the killings:
I believe Norway will change: there will be a Norway before and a Norway after the killing. But I believe the Norway afterwards will be possible to recognise, a society based on democracy and openness and where we welcome people to take part in society.
The decision [to close Breivik's court appearance] was taken by the court. The government has its responsibilities, the parliament has its responsibility, and the courts have their responsibility. I am the prime minister, and I will never comment or intervene on how the courts do their work.
We have extreme people in Norway and we have violence, but we have never seen violence on this scale. I will do everything I can to ensure that we will not lose our core values of openness and democracy.
15.13 Here’s some video of the minute’s silence in Oslo, and of David Cameron talking about the events:
15.07 In the questions afterwards, the judge says it is too early to say whether the main court case will be open to the public, as is the norm.
14.40 So the key points from the 35-minute court hearing were:
• Breivik admitted carrying out the massacre, but did not plead guilty
• He told the court that wanted to save Europe from “cultural Marxism” and Muslim immigration.
• He referred to two other “cells” in his “organisation”
• His aim was not to kill as many people as possible
• He meant instead to send a “signal” to the Labour Party
• Breivik said he was punishing the party for “treason” of mass immigration
• He will be held for eight weeks for interrogation
• The first four weeks he will be held in complete isolation
• He will have no visits, letters or access to media.
Anders Behring Breivik leaves the Oslo court after his hearing. (Photo: JEFF GILBERT)
14.23 Here’s the judge’s ruling:
The judgment has been communicated to the accused, to the defence attorney and the prosecuting attorney. This is the judgment. Anders Behring Breivik, has been charged under the Norwegian criminal law, article 147a, for acts of terrorism. Oslo police district has asked for the suspect to be remanded in custody for eight weeks with a ban on letters and visits with a complete isolation for four weeks.
The penal code 147a regards the destablisation or destruction of sections society such as the government and creating serious fear in the population, when the accused is suspected of criminal acts that could lead to more than six months in prison.
• Breivik admitted to carrying out attacks but pleaded not guilty:
The court refers to that the accused has acknowledged carrying out the bomb explosion in the government buildings and the shootings in Utoya as mentioned in the court charges. Despite the accused acknowledging the actual circumstances, he has not pleaded guilty.
• He wished to make the Labour Party ‘pay’ for ‘treason’ of allowing Muslim immigration:
The court understands that the accused believes he had to carry out these attacks in order to save Europe from among other things “cultural Marxism” and Muslim takeover.
His motive can be understood in the following manner: the objective of the attacks was to give a “sharp signal” to people, to give the greatest possible loss to the Labour Party, to limit future recruitment. The accused explained that the Labour Party has failed the country and the people, and the price of their treason was what they had to pay yesterday.
The intention was not to kill as many people as possible, but to give a strong signal to the Labour Party that if they continue to allow mass immigration and to import Muslims [there would be consequences].
Based on the statement of the accused, the court finds it sufficiently proven that the accused has acted to carry out terror, as defined under penal code 147a. Beyond that the court does not find it necessary to process the accused’s motive.
• He is to be held for eight weeks, four in complete isolation, to prevent him communicating with accomplices
The court further finds that the conditions for remanding the accused in custody have been met, as there is an immediate risk that the accused would tamper with evidence if he were now relased. Reference has been made to the accused making statements that require further investigation, including a statement about “two more cells in our organisation”, and as such the investigations must be carried out without the accused being able to interfere with the investigation or to disturb it.
Penal alternatives to the penal code 168 are not applicable in this case. Remanding in custody for up to eight weeks is a proportional measure. The court finds out of consideration to the investigation, the accused not be given the op[portunity to communicate with others [and so Breivik will be denied access to media and prevented from communicating].
The prosecution has also requested complete isolation, with regard of the loss of evidence. The court finds that the seriousness of the case means that the conditions are met. The isolation has been set at four weeks.
Anders Behring Breivik, born 13 February 1979, will be held by the court not beyond 20 September 2011. He will be held in complete isolation until 22 August 2011. That is the ruling.
14.22 The judge’s statement is expected any minute now.
14.20 The few brief glimpses of Breivik that journalists got through his car window as he arrived showed he was wearing a red shirt and red jumper – it looks as though his request to wear a “uniform” was denied.
14.14 “Pandemonium” outside the courtroom ahead of the judge’s statement, according to Sky’s Ali Bunkall. “Norway is a very polite society”, he notes. “Blame foreign media?”
14.11 David Cameron has been asked in his press conference about the suggestion that Breivik was “recruited” by two members of an English far-Right group. He said:
We’ve only just heard those claims and I don’t want to give you partial information, but I assure you we take it extremely seriously. We are working extremely closely with Norway and want to help in any way we can.
14.09 Two young men tried to attack the car that was transporting Breivik when it arrived at court earlier. Michelle Shephard of the Toronto Star spoke to one of them; he said that one of his friends had been killed and another wounded in Utoya.
14.03 This is the armoured Mercedes that Breivik arrived and left court in.
13.54 Jose Zapatero describes the attacks as “One of the most serious and worrying events we have seen on European soil” and says it calls for a “European response”. Zapatero became Prime Minister just weeks after the 2004 Madrid bombings which killed 191 people.
13.47 David Cameron is speaking alongside the Spanish Prime Minister Jose Zapatero in Downing Street:
Norway is very much in our hearts and minds today. The thoughts of everyone in Britain are with the victims of this atrocity Britain and Spain have both been victims of terror and wish to offer their full support. We know that the resilience and the courage and the decency of our Norwegian friends will overcome this evil.
In the wake of this atrocity Britain must of course review its own security, and that’s what the NSC started to do this morning.
13.42 The Oslo newspaper Aftenposten ran a large interview this morning with Geir Lippestad, the lawyer who is to represent Breivik in court. Thore Haugstad, one of our reporters, has translated a few key points from it – these aren’t verbatim:
Breivik says that in 60 years, society will understand what he just did. Lippestad does not want to promote any of the ideologies represented by Breivik; he has not, and will not, tell Breivik his own views on the actions.
Lippestad has consciously decided not to comment or repeat the manifesto. He also doubts whether the press are right to do this.
Breivik has not changed. He remains calm and is focusing on the details. He perceives this as a kind of war or revolution, and that his actions are necessary to achieve his goals; it is clear he acted on deep beliefs.
Lippestad has personally been engaged in the Norwergian handicap society, donor organisations, a cancer charity and other charities; he says the case poses personal problems for him, but that it is important to follow democratic principles, and he wants to remain professional.
13.39 Neil Tweedie also says Breivik has left the building:
There is an underground car park that you can use to rejoin the traffic, and it looks like he must have been taken out from there. They are letting people back into car park, which is an almost certain sign that he’s left. The crowd is starting to dissipate and there’s a feeling of anti-climax.
13.34 NRK is now saying that the hearing is over and that Breivik is on his way back to jail. The judge will give his ruling at 3.15pm local time – 2.15pm BST.
13.31 A bit more on the Poland connection, via Reuters. Polish police are questioning the owner of a fertiliser company in Wroclaw about his contacts, but the deputy head of the national security agency ABW, Pawel Bialek, has told a news conference:
According to our experts, the materials bought in Poland were not critical for the construction of the bomb. At this stage, the information and materials we have do not indicate that the relations with the terrorist were anything other than commercial.
No detentions have been made, and no charges brought against anybody in Poland over the case, he said.
13.29 Prosecutors are calling for Breivik to be detained for questioning for eight weeks, double the usual limit.
13.22 The Breivik hearing is now under way, according to NRK.
13.19 The Polish security agency says that “for now” it seems that Breivik “was only in commercial contact” with the Polish chemical store. More when we hear it.
13.17 Raf Sanchez has the following report on Breivik’s appearance at court:
The 32-year-old arrived at court under heavy guard as hundreds of people and the world’s media waited outside.
He was driven into the court’s basement car park in the back of a heavily armoured vehicle, which onlookers banged on as it drove past.
Some screamed “You have betrayed our country” as the convoy rolled through.
13.10 David Cameron, the Prime Minister, earlier chaired a meeting of the National Security Council looking at the implications of Breivik’s actions for Britain. Security services are to examine whether “adequate scrutiny” is being applied to far-Right extremists in this country, Downing Street said, after it was reported that Breivik had been recruited by two such extremists at a meeting in 2002.
13.04 The Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten, without citing sources, has reported that Breivik told investigators that he had hoped to reach Utoya while former Prime Minister Harlem Brundtland was visiting, but got there after she had left. Oslo police have declined to comment. The paper said:
Anders Behring Breivik had plans to come to Utoeya (island) while Gro Harlem Brundtland was visiting on Friday, but claims under interrogation that he was delayed.
Former Norwegian prime minister Gro Harlem Brundtland. (Photo: GETTY)
13.01 The BBC’s Europe editor, Gavin Hewitt, writes on Norway and the “politics of hate”:
I was reminded of [Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber, and] America’s paranoid strain as I read through the manifesto of Anders Behring Breivik who admits carrying out the bombings and shootings in Norway.
For at least nine years he carried anger towards the changes occurring in Norwegian society. He did not accept the multicultural country that was emerging. It threatened his identity and he felt alienated from it. He was in contact with other extreme groups who increasingly saw Islam as a danger and the enemy.
12.55 Our feature writer Neil Tweedie calls from outside the courtroom. He says:
There are about a thousand people at a vehicle exit at the back, and lots of media. We don’t know when the hearing will be over. It’s not an ugly mood – this is Norway, it doesn’t really do ugly moods. “We want to show him it’s our city, not his”, says one woman. “We are many, we are one”, says another, with some eloquence.
Later, at about 6pm local time [5pm BST], there will be a candlelit procession through Oslo.
Here’s a screengrab from Norwegian TV of Breivik being brought to the court by the police:
12.44 Breivik has arrived at court. Crowds are screaming at him. Mark Townsend tweets that they are shouting “You have betrayed our country”.
12.35 Still no sign of Breivik at the court, although he is expected soon. Journalists still gathered outside the courtroom.
12.30 Dr Tim Stanley, one of our bloggers, writes that the Tea Party does not bear responsibility for Anders Breivik:
…what has been released of Breivik’s writings suggest that this vainglorious, steroid-addicted madman didn’t understand the conservative sources he quoted or regularly attend the church he professed to love. Even if he did, the claim that there is a direct link between the Tea Party, the BNP and Anders Breivik is to draw lines between totally unconnected dots. The Tea Party, in particular, is not racist and does not advocate violence. Claims to the contrary have been investigated and debunked. It is primarily concerned with balancing the federal budget: hardly code-language for genocide
12.22 Reuters has a bit more colour on the observation of the minute’s silence in Oslo – even after the minute was up, people stayed standing:
The silence stretched to five minutes as thousands more stood around a carpet of flowers outside the nearby Oslo cathedral. The only sound was the squawking of seagulls and a lone dog barking.
Cars stopped in the streets and their drivers got out and stood motionless as traffic lights changed from red to green.
12.15 The online chemical supplier is mentioned in Breivik’s 1,500-page manifesto, according to Norwegian journalist Stian Pride on Twitter. Ketil Stensrud says that the Norwegian police are yet to confirm that the Polish arrests are connected to Breivik.
12.08 More on the Polish connection: it sounds as though there have been six Polish nationals arrested in connection with the attacks. One is the owner of a web-based chemical products supplier; it seems as though the other five have been released. More as we hear it.
12.06 As the media scrum gathers around the Oslo courtroom, a round of applause ripples around. The BBC’s reporter looks around; it turns out that a wedding has been taking place in the registry office, and the couple, a heavily pregnant, widely smiling woman in a red dress and her new husband, come out of the course. “A glimpse of normality“, says the Norwegian man being interviewed.
12.04 Sky reports that Polish police are investigating reports that Breivik tried to buy explosives in Poland. A man has been arrested in the city of Wroclaw, according to NRK.
12.03 Further to the earlier revelation that Breivik is an admirer of Vladimir Putin, the Russian Prime Minister has responded. Andrew Osborn has more
A spokesman for Vladimir Putin, the Russian prime minister, has dismissed admiring comments made by Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik about Mr Putin.
The spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, told Russian daily newspaper Kommersant: “This person (Breivik) is the devil incarnate. He is absolutely mad. And whatever he wrote or said cannot be called anything but the ravings of a mad man.” Meanwhile Nashi, the Kremlin-backed patriotic youth movement which also found itself mentioned by Breivik in flattering terms, has declined to comment on his views of the organisation.
12.01 The Guardian’s Mark Townsend tweeted an hour or so ago on the reaction of ordinary Norwegians – one of remarkable stoicism, it seems:
TownsendMark One striking aspect is that of dozens of locals, including survivors from island, I’ve met not one has condemned Breivik. Tolerance prevails
12.00 Breivik’s hearing begins at any moment.
11.45 Charlie Brooker has written a piece in today’s Guardian, bemoaning the willingness of the media to push “fact-free conjecture” as expert analysis in the early hours of the crisis, rushing to blame the attack on Islamists:
If anyone reading this runs a news channel, please, don’t clog the airwaves with fact-free conjecture unless you’re going to replace the word “expert” with “guesser” and the word “speculate” with “guess”, so it’ll be absolutely clear that when the anchor asks the expert to speculate, they’re actually just asking a guesser to guess. Also, choose better guessers. Your guessers were terrible, like toddlers hypothesising how a helicopter works. I don’t know anything about international terrorism, but even I outguessed them.
11.40 The judge’s statement in full:
Based on information in the case the court finds that today’s detention hearing should be held behind closed doors. It is clear that there is concrete information that a public hearing with the suspect present could quickly lead to an extraordinary and very difficult situation in terms of the investigation and security.
11.25 Confirmed: no media or members of the public will be present in the Breivik hearing. TV2 says that police fear that the shooter could have sent coded messages to accomplices via television, according to Ketil B Stensrud of Radio NRJ Kristiansand. The judge, Kim Heger, says that an open hearing would make the investigation difficult and would raise security issues.
11.08 The Guardian’s Roy Greenslade has blogged on the decisions of various newspapers this morning to lead on the Norway attacks or on Amy Winehouse’s death – “How editors confront the hierarchy of death“:
Another example today of journalism’s hierarchy of death. Which is the most important story? The murder of 93 people in Norway or the lonely death of Amy Winehouse?
Editors’ choices illustrate, yet again, the two distinct presses that exist in Britain.
11.03 The Prime Minister and members of the Norwegian royal family are signing a book of condolence for the victims. Meanwhile, Sky’s Alistair Bunkall reportsthat the Breivik hearing will be held behind closed doors: no official confirmation yet, and his colleague Ian Woods says that there has been no statement as such to the press waiting outside the courtroom. However, Norway’s TV2 is saying the same thing.
11.01 He goes back inside after an impeccably observed silence, with only seagulls breaking the peace. Here’s the crowd in front of the government buildings, with a field of flowers left in memory:
11.00 The minute’s silence begins. The Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg is standing, dressed in black, in front of a crowd outside Oslo’s government buildings, and says “To remember the victims who died at the goverment’s headquarters and on the island of Utoeya, I declare a minute of silence”.
10.56 In a few moments a minute’s silence will be observed in Norway. People are filling the streets of Oslo ahead of it:
(Photo: Christian Aglen/Twitpic)
10.52 Andrew Osborn, our Russia correspondent, writes that Breivik’s admiration for Vladimir Putin and the “Nashi” political youth movement in Russia has been “getting some play” in the media there:
Breivik wrote: “Putin seems to be a fair and decisive leader, deserving of respect. At this stage I am not sure whether in the future he will be our best friend or our worst enemy … but I’d rather not have him as an enemy.”
Breivik also admitted that Putin would have no choice but to condemn the attack, adding that he “understood this”.
On Russia’s Nashi youth movement which he believed Norway should imitate: “We must reach a consensus on establishing a modern, ‘untainted’ conservative patriotic youth movement,” Breivik wrote. “This should be an equivalent of the Russian movement Nashi. They are anti-fascists but patriotic conservatives.”
10.44 As we wait to hear whether the Breivik hearing will be open or closed to the public, here’s a picture – via Carl Dinnen on Twitter – of the press outside queuing to get in:
CarlDinnen 50 or so reporters and photographers waiting to get into Oslo courtroom for Breivik case. Confusion on local remand hearings restrictions. Judge now deciding if anyone from the media will be allowed into Breivik hearing or if it will be completely closed.
A decision will be made in the next half an hour, according to the BBC.
10.32 Anders Behring Breivik‘s father and stepmother are under armed guard in France, and “haven’t slept a wink since his arrest”, according to AFP. Wanda Breivik, the second wife of Anders’s father Jens, said:
We are not leaving at present. Jens left for Spain on Sunday morning to get away from the media pressure. We’ve spent terrible nights, not sleeping a wink since his arrest. I’ve not met Anders but I’m still traumatised. We both are.
Yesterday, Mr Breivik, a retired diplomat, told of his “absolute horror” at his son’s actions:
I view this atrocity with absolute horror. My condolences go out to all those who have suffered because of this. I am in a state of shock and have not recovered.
Police are stationed outside Mr Breivik’s house in Carcassonne, in the south of France, to “prevent incidents, any disturbance to public order”, according to the local public prosecutor.
French police officers work around the house of Jens Breivik, the father of Anders Behring Breivik, in Cournanel, southern France. (Photo: AP)
10.21 Further to the last point: in fact there has been no confirmation on whether the open hearing is to be allowed. A police prosecutor told Reuters:
It’s up to the judge to decide. It’s not uncommon that the police will ask for it in advance but I don’t know if the police will ask for that.
10.10 The Norwegian broadcaster NRK has spoken to Breivik’s lawyer Geir Lippestad, who says that the massacre was brought on by his client’s desire to bring about “revolution” in Norwegian society. He told NRK that his actions were “atrocious, but necessary”, and that he admits carrying them out but denies “criminal responsibility”.
He has requested an open hearing in court, which Ketil Stensrud reports has been allowed. There is no word yet whether his request to wear a uniform at the hearing will be granted.
10.06 Ketil B Stensrud, a former Mirror and Independent journalist who now works at Radio NRJ Kristiansand in Norway, tweets that “Anders Behring Breivik was on anabolic steroids during Utoya massacre to feel ‘insurmountable’“, according to the Norwegian tabloid VG. More as we hear it.
10.00 More from our commenters. Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London and Telegraph columnist, writes that there is nothing to study in the mind of Norway’s mass killer:
We will never be satisfied with simple words like “mad” or “evil”, and for the days and weeks ahead we can expect exhaustive psychoanalysis of this dreary and supercilious 32-year-old sicko. We will summon and interview all the potential hobgoblins of his mind. With the help of the Norwegian investigators, we will try to understand how these demons persuaded him to engage in an act of such premeditated cruelty; and as our guide we will use the 1,500-page manifesto of hate that he (and possibly his accomplices) have posted on the internet… but like so many others of his type he was essentially a narcissist and egomaniac who could not cope with being snubbed. We should spend less time thinking about him, and much more on the victims and their families.
09.49 Dr Matthew Goodwin, the author of New British Fascism and a Nottingham University lecturer in extremism, race and immigration, writes that many within the far Right share Anders Breivik’s ideas:
Make no mistake: Breivik has already become a heroic figure for sections of the ultra far right, much in the same way Timothy McVeigh became a hero for sections of the militia movement in the United States… His manifesto suggests that some of his ideas were influenced by groups in Britain, namely the English Defence League (EDL).
For too long, our efforts to prevent violent extremism and counter radicalisation have focused almost exclusively on Muslim communities.
9.38 Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland will join Norway in a minute of silence at noon in Olso (11am BST). Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and the royal family will observe it together at the University of Oslo and flags across Scandanavia will fly at half mast.
9.27 Denmark’s justice minister, Lars Barfoed, has announced a review of rules on fertiliser sales in light of the apparent ease with which Breivik was able to build a bomb. Lars Barfoed told Danish national radio:
We must learn from this episode and it is sensible for us to go through the rules on sales of artificial fertiliser to see whether there is a need to make them even more restrictive. It may be that we should require a report if a company suddenly buys an unusually large amount of fertiliser.
9.20 Oeystein Maeland, the head of Norway’s police force: “From what we now know, it looks like we will revise down the number of people killed (on the island).”
9.17 Norwegian prosecutors will ask for eight weeks to prepare their case, meaning a trial could go ahead as early September
9.16 We’re now hearing that the court session could be closed, if it is then it’s unlikely we’ll get much out of it straight away.
9.11 We’re getting a little more detail about the death of Trond Berntsen, the security guard on the island and the step brother of Norway’s Crown Princess Mette-Marit.
The 51-year-old off-duty policeman apparently had a son on the island who was attending the youth camp. Once he ensured the boy was safe, Berntsen attempted to arrest Breivik and was killed. It’s not yet clear whether his son survived.
Trond Berntsen, an off-duty police officer and half-brother of Norway’s Princess Mette-Marit, who was killed by Anders Behring Breivik on Utoya. (Photo: AP)
9.08 The daily newspaper Dagsavien demands “Why didn’t you come earlier?” on its front page as criticism of the police response mounts. You can see all the Norwegian front pages online – interesting to note how muted they seem compared to the British ones and how few have run with pictures of the gunman.
9.03 Breaking: Reuters is reporting that the police are likely to “revise down” the number of deaths in the Utoya island shooting. The current figure is 86 and as of this morning police were still searching for several people. It’s not yet clear what development led the police to make this announcement.
9.01 In, London, David Cameron is due to chair a meeting of the National Security Council to review how the emergency services would respond to a terrorist attack. The meeting comes amid growing fears that Breivik may have made contact with extreme Right figures in Britain.
9.00 French gendarmes are searching Breivikh’s father’s house in Cournanel, in the south of the country near Carcassone. Jens Breivik is a former Norwegian diplomat who served at the embassy in London while his son was a small child. He is estranged from the 32-year-old and said he saw “this atrocity with absolute horror”.
8.56 Breivikh, who has already confessed to the twin attacks but denies criminal responsibility, will appear in court for the first time at around 12pm BST (1pm Norway).
He has two wishes: the first is that there is a public hearing and the second is that he is allowed to wear a uniform,” Geir Lippestad told the NRK television channel late Sunday.
“I don’t know what uniform,” he said, adding that the 32-year-old wanted to explain why he unleashed the carnage and “wants to do it publicly”.
Behring Breivik will run a central Oslo court-house gauntlet set for around 1:00 pm (1200BST).
He has the status of “official suspect” ahead of the arraignment, but will not learn the actual charges until the investigation is concluded, with police still hunting for possible accomplices.
Under Norwegian law the judge can order his detention for up to four weeks, after which it must be renewed. It is also up to the judge whether to hold the hearing behind closed doors.
8.55 The step-brother of Norwegian Crown Princess Mette Marit was among the 86 people killed on the island of Utoya, the royal court has announced.
Court spokeswoman Marianne Hagen says the victim was Trond Berntsen, an off duty policeman who was working as a security guard on the island. He is the son of Mette-Marit’s stepfather, who died in 2008.
8.54 The police response to Friday’s attacks is coming under increasing scrutiny, as questions are asked why it took so long to respond to the island massacre. Peter Hutchison and Nick Meo write:
Transport problems, including a lack of helicopters and a boat that sank, meant it took an hour to apprehend Anders Breivik after he began his attack, police admitted.
There had also been anger among some of the grieving families after suggestions that a security guard at the summer camp had not been at his post and had failed to apprehend the gunman.
However, police officials confirmed he had been at the scene, but had been one of Breivik’s first victims.
8.53 Among the “cultural traitors” named in Breivik’s rambling 1,500 page manifesto were Gordon Brown, Tony Blair and the Prince of Wales.
Written in perfect, idiomatic English and datelined “London, 2011″, the “European Declaration of Independence” is laced with references to British politicians, journalists and public figures seen as “targets”.
The manifesto, which took Breivik three years to write, is part terrorists’ handbook, part autobiography and part extremist political rant. It has provided police with a mine of information which will help establish whether the gunman had accomplices.
Gordon Brown’s picture appears alongside that of Hitler in a gallery of “war criminals” who have failed to halt the spread of Islam, and Breivik says Gordon Brown was “colluding with” Islamic terror groups by making “London the global centre of Islamic banking”. He adds: “Brown is giving Muslims more influence over our lives yet knows that terrorists are organising to go to war with us.”
Jack Straw and Tony Blair are named because they “‘dishonestly’ concealed a plan to allow in more immigrants and make Britain more multicultural”.
8.52 The hunt is on for possible British accomplices of Anders Behring Breivikh after it emerged that he had met other Right-wing extremists in London. Our chief reporter Gordon Rayner reports:
Before he carried out Norway’s worst terrorist atrocity, Breivik typed out a chilling 1,500-page description of his plans, written entirely in English and datelined “London, 2011”.
He signed the document “Andrew Berwick”, an Anglicised version of his name, and described his “mentor” as an Englishman he identified as Richard.
Scotland Yard counter-terrorism officers are now trying to establish whether Breivik visited London in recent years and whether he was part of a wider network preparing to carry out similar attacks.
The 32 year-old boasted that he was just one of up to 80 “solo martyr cells” recruited throughout Western Europe who were ready to follow his example of trying to overthrow governments tolerant of Islam.
He said he regarded himself as a successor to the medieval Knights Templar, and claimed to have been recruited at a meeting in London in April 2002, which was hosted by two English extremists and attended by eight people in total.
8.50BST (9.50 Norway) Good morning and welcome back to our live blog, bringing you all the latest developments from the tragedy in Norway.
Read the entire article and updates HERE.