Breivik compares his pain with victims’
Roses are left near the security screening point outside the Oslo courtroom.The right-wing extremist who confessed to a massacre of 77 people in Norway compared yesterday the pain he caused the families of his victims to his own situation, saying he lost contact with his friends and family after the July 22 attacks.
Anders Behring Breivik, 33, showed no remorse as he continued his shocking testimony about his shooting spree at the annual summer youth camp of the governing Labor Party. Calling the rampage “necessary,” Breivik compared being shunned by those close to him to the grief of the bereaved. “The only difference was that for my part it was a choice,” he said. For the first time since his trial started on April 16, the 33-year-old right-wing extremist voiced a small ounce of regret for his actions.
“I would like to offer a large apology” to those who were injured or killed in the bombing of an Oslo government building as they were just passing by and had no political connections, he said. “They are not defined as legitimate targets.” But when prosecutor Enga Bejer Engh asked if he wanted to say the same to any of the 69 people -- mainly teens -- slaughtered in his shooting massacre on the nearby island of Utoeya after the bombing, Breivik said: “No, I do not.” He reiterated that youngsters attending a summer camp hosted by the ruling Labor Party’s youth wing were “legitimate targets”, as “political activists” working for the “deconstruction of Norwegian society” through the multiculturalism he insists is leading to a “Muslim invasion” of the country.
Breivik told the court that questions about his mental health are part of a racist plot to discredit his extreme anti-Muslim ideology. Breivik said that no one would have asked for a psychiatric examination had he been a “bearded jihadist.” “But because I am a militant nationalist, I am being subjected to grave racism,” he said. “They are trying to delegitimize everything I stand for.”
Asked why he spared one man who survived the shooting spree, Breivik said he thought it was because the man’s appearance made him look “right wing-oriented.” “When I looked at him I saw myself,” Breivik said. “I think that was the reason that I didn’t fire shots at him.”
If found sane Breivik would face 21 years in prison though he can be held longer if deemed a danger to society. If sentenced to psychiatric care, in theory he would be released once he’s no longer deemed psychotic and dangerous.
Compiled from AFP, AP and Reuters stories by the Daily News staff.