sunny.png
Sunday October 24th, 2021 12:05PM

Norway officials: Bow-and-arrow attack appears act of terror

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

KONGSBERG, Norway (AP) — A Danish man suspected of killing five people with a bow and arrow and possibly other weapons while randomly shooting at strangers in a small Norwegian town appears to have committed an act of terrorism, authorities in Norway said Thursday.

The Wednesday night attack at a supermarket and other locations in downtown Kongsberg, a town of about 26,000 residents not far from Norway's capital, left the country stunned as police released some details, including that officers made contact with the 37-year-old suspect but he initially escaped.

“From what we know now, it is reasonably clear that some, probably everyone, was killed after the police were in contact with the perpetrator,” regional police chief Ole B. Saeverud said Thursday. The victims were four women and one man between the ages of 50 and 70. Three other people were injured, police said.

Mass killings are rare in low-crime Norway, and the attack immediately drew comparisons with the country's worst peacetime slaughter a decade ago, when a right-wing domestic extremist killed 77 people with a bomb, a rifle and a pistol.

People have “experienced that their safe local environment suddenly became a dangerous place,” Norwegian King Harald V said Thursday. “It shakes us all when horrible things happen near us, when you least expect it, in the middle of everyday life on the open street.”

According to police, the suspect in Wednesday's attack walked around downtown Kongsberg shooting arrows. Police were alerted to the attack around 6:15 p.m. and arrested the suspect about 30 minutes later. Regional prosecutor Ann Iren Svane Mathiassen, told The Associated Press that after the man's arrest, he “clearly described what he had done. He admitted killing the five people.”

Norway’s domestic security agency, known by its acronym PST, cited various aspects of the attack to explain its belief that the suspect’s actions “currently appear to be an act of terrorism.”

“Attacks on random people in public places are a recurring modus operandi among extremist Islamists carrying out terror in the West,” the agency said. It said “the most probable scenario” for such an attack in Norway “is an attack carried out by one or a few perpetrators with simple weapon types, against targets with few or no security measures.”

“The investigation will clarify in more detail what the incidents were motivated by,” PST said in a statement.

The man arrested Wednesday had been on the security agency’s radar, but the agency did not say why. Police described him as a Muslim convert who was previously flagged as having been radicalized.

“There earlier had been worries of the man having been radicalized,” Saeverud, the police chief, said during a news conference. He didn’t elaborate on what he meant by calling the suspect radicalized and did not provide more information about why the suspect was previously flagged and what authorities did in response.

Svane Mathiassen, the prosecutor, said the bow and arrows were just part of the killer’s arsenal. Police have not said what other weapons were used in the attack. Weapons experts and other technical officers were being drafted in to help with the investigation.

Dozens of witnesses in Kongsberg saw the gruesome events. Erik Benum, who lives on the same road as the supermarket that was one of the crime scenes, told the AP that he saw the escaped shop workers sheltering in doorways.

“I saw them hiding in the corner. Then I went to see what was happening, and I saw the police moving in with a shield and rifles. It was a very strange sight,” Benum said.

The following morning, the whole town was eerily quiet, he said. “People are sad and shocked.”

Both the hospitalized victims are in intensive care. They include an off-duty police officer who was inside the store. Their conditions were not immediately known.

The suspect is being held on preliminary charges, which is a step short of formal charges. He will formally face a custody hearing Friday. Police believe he acted alone.

Norwegian media reported that the suspect previously had been convicted of burglary and possession of drugs, and last year a local court granted a restraining order ordering him to stay away from his parents for a six-month period after he threatened to kill one of them.

Svane Mathiassen, who is leading the investigation, told Norwegian broadcaster NRK that the suspect will be assessed by forensic psychiatric experts Thursday.

“This is not unusual in such serious cases,” she was quoted as saying.

PST said Thursday that the terror threat level for Norway remains unchanged and was considered “moderate.” The main church in Kongsberg was open to anyone in need of support.

“I don’t think anyone expects to have these kinds of experiences. But nobody could imagine this could happen here in our little town,” parish priest Reidar Aasboe told the AP.

___

Olsen reported from Copenhagen, Denmark, and Lewis from London.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top General short headlines, AP World News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Norway officials: Bow-and-arrow attack appears act of terror
Norway’s domestic security agency says a bow-and-arrow attack that killed five people appears to have been an act of terrorism
7:36AM ( 9 minutes ago )
5 killed in Beirut during protest over judge in blast probe
Lebanon’s interior minister says five people have been killed in armed clashes in Beirut that erupted Thursday during protests against the lead investigator into last year’s massive blast at the city's port
7:33AM ( 12 minutes ago )
At UN court, Armenia accuses Azerbaijan of ethnic hatred
Armenia is accusing neighboring Azerbaijan of systematically promoting ethnic hatred against Armenia citizens as the two nations that fought a six-week war last year face off at a U.N. court
7:32AM ( 13 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Report: 3 killed in Beirut amid clashes over blast probe
At least three people have reportedly been killed in armed clashes in Beirut amid protests against the lead judge investigating last year’s massive blast in the city's port
6:04AM ( 1 hour ago )
Fire at southern Taiwan building leaves 46 dead, dozens hurt
Officials say the death toll from a fire in southern Taiwan that engulfed a building overnight has further risen to 46 people
5:55AM ( 1 hour ago )
Jennifer Garner among guests for Katie Couric book tour
Katie Couric’s book tour, which begins in two weeks, will have some have well known guests
5:33AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP National News
Taiwan tensions raise fears of US-China conflict in Asia
After sending a record number of military aircraft to harass Taiwan over China’s National Day holiday, Beijing has toned down the saber rattling but tensions remain high, with the rhetoric and reasoning behind the exercises unchanged
2:55AM ( 4 hours ago )
Fire kills 14 people, injures 51 in southern Taiwan
A fire in southern Taiwan has killed at least 14 people after it engulfed a 13-story building overnight
2:09AM ( 5 hours ago )
Assailant with bow and arrows kills 5 people in Norway
A man armed with a bow and arrows killed five people and wounded others near the Norwegian capital of Oslo
1:37AM ( 6 hours ago )
Top General short headlines
Russia marks pandemic high of infections, deaths
Russia has recorded the highest daily numbers of coronavirus infections and deaths since the start of the pandemic, a rapidly surging toll that has severely strained the nation’s health care system
6:14AM ( 1 hour ago )
Rome trial opens for 4 members of Egyptian security forces
The trial of four high-ranking members of Egypt’s security forces has started in a Rome courtroom
5:29AM ( 2 hours ago )
Austrian ex-Chancellor Kurz sworn in as member of parliament
Austrian news agency APA has reported that former Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has been sworn as a member of parliament after resigning last week amid corruption allegations
5:21AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP World News
5 killed in Beirut during protest over judge in blast probe
Lebanon’s interior minister says five people have been killed in armed clashes in Beirut that erupted Thursday during protests against the lead investigator into last year’s massive blast at the city's port
7:33AM ( 13 minutes ago )
Overnight building blaze in Taiwan raged for hours, 46 dead
Taiwanese authorities say that a building fire in southern Taiwan that blazed out of control for hours overnight has killed at least 46 people
7:28AM ( 17 minutes ago )
Overnight blaze in Taiwan engulfs building, kills 46 people
Taiwanese authorities say that a building fire in southern Taiwan that blazed out of control for hours overnight has killed at least 46 people
7:13AM ( 32 minutes ago )
Deere & Co. workers go on strike after rejecting contract
More than 10,000 Deere & Co. workers went on strike Thursday after the United Auto Workers union said negotiators couldn't deliver a new agreement that would meet the “demands and needs” of workers
7:07AM ( 39 minutes ago )
The Latest: Hungary reports 5-month high in new daily cases
Hungary has reported the highest daily number of new COVID-19 cases in five months, and hospitalizations also are spiking
6:38AM ( 1 hour ago )