Man with bow and arrow kills 5 people in Norway; officials say appears act of terror

Danish man suspected of the attack is a Muslim convert who was previously flagged as having been radicalised, say police

Man with bow and arrow kills 5 people in Norway; officials say appears act of terror

Police officers investigate after several people were killed and others were injured by a man using a bow and arrows to carry out attacks, in Kongsberg, Norway, October 13, 2021. Reuters

Kongsberg (Norway), October 14 

Norway’s domestic security agency says a bow-and-arrow attack that killed five people appears to have been an act of terrorism.

The agency, known by its acronym PST, said Thursday that Wednesday night’s attack in a small Norwegian town “currently appear to be an act of terrorism.”

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

It added that the suspect “is known to PST from before, without PST being able to provide further details about him.”

Police said Thursday that the Danish man suspected of the attack is a Muslim convert who was previously flagged as having been radicalised.

The domestic security agency said the terror threat level for Norway remains unchanged and was considered “moderate.”

The police chief in the community of Kongsberg, near the capital of Oslo, said there was “a confrontation” between officers and the assailant, but he did not elaborate. Two other people were wounded and hospitalised in intensive care, including an officer who was off duty and inside the shop where the attack took place, police said.

“The man who carried out the act has been arrested by the police, and there is no active search for more people. Based on the information we have, there is one person behind this,” Police Chief Oeyving Aas said.

Acting Prime Minister Erna Solberg described the attack as “gruesome”. The prime minister-designate, Jonas Gahr Stoere, who is expected to take office Thursday, called the assault “a cruel and brutal act” in comments to Norwegian news agency NTB.

Police were alerted to the attack around 6:15 p.m. and arrested the suspect about 30 minutes later. The community of some 26,000 inhabitants is about 66 km southwest of Oslo.

According to police, the suspect walked around downtown Kongsberg shooting arrows. Aas declined to comment on reports that the man used a crossbow, saying only there were “several crime scenes.”   

The man has not been questioned yet, Aas said.

Mass killings are rare in Norway. The country's worst peacetime slaughter was on July 22, 2011, when right-wing extremist Anders Breivik set off a bomb in the capital of Oslo, killing eight people. Then he headed to tiny Utoya Island, where he stalked the mostly teen members of the Labor Party's youth wing and killed another 69 victims.

Breivik was sentenced to 21 years in prison, the maximum under Norwegian law, but his term can be extended as long as he's considered a danger to society. AP

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