Norway claims the attack was a ‘act of terror.’
The suspect, a Danish Muslim convert previously recognized amid suspicions he had been radicalized, looks to have been a “act of terror” in a bow-and-arrow attack that killed five people, Norway said Thursday.
During the rampage in the south-eastern town of Kongsberg on Wednesday, four women and a man were killed, and three others were injured in Norway’s bloodiest attack in a decade.
“The actions in Kongsberg now appear to be an act of terror,” Norway’s intelligence service PST said, “but the inquiry… will determine in further detail what the acts were inspired by.”
The individual is considered to be a Muslim convert, according to police officer Ole Bredrup Saeverud, who added, “There were worries relating to radicalisation previously.”
The 37-year-old suspect, named by police as Espen Andersen Brathen, confessed after questioning, according to Saeverud.
The victims of the incident were all between the ages of 50 and 70.
Reports linking him to radicalization predate this year, according to Saeverud, and police investigated at the time. “We haven’t had any reports about him in 2021, but we have had reports about him earlier,” he said.
“We’re pretty sure he did it on his own.”
PST also acknowledged that they were aware of the suspect, but declined to provide any other information on him on Thursday.
Brathen had previously been the subject of two court orders, according to Norwegian media, including a restraining order against two close family members after threatening to kill one of them and a 2012 conviction for burglary and obtaining narcotics.
He allegedly released a video on social media in 2017 in which he issued a “warning” while expressing his Muslim faith, according to the website Nettavisen.
Wednesday’s incident, according to the PST security service, did not raise the country’s overall threat level, which it described as “moderate.”
“What transpired in Kongsberg on Wednesday, October 13 does not modify our national danger assessment,” PST stated.
It was the deadliest attack since Anders Behring Breivik, a far-right terrorist who killed 77 people in 2011.
Since then, another far-right incident has occurred in Norway, this time with a self-described neo-Nazi who opened fire on a mosque.
On Thursday, Kongsberg, a lovely town of 25,000 inhabitants with wooden facades and autumn trees changing color, was mostly quiet.
Knut Olav Ouff, 54, told AFP he was preparing to light a cigarette on the threshold when he was caught up in the chaos.
He claimed, “I observed a friend of mine fleeing behind a car and then heard a ‘thung.'” “The tingle was audible to me.” The Washington Newsday Brief News is a daily newspaper published in Washington, D.C.