Norway 'received phone threat before Breivik attacks'

Norway 'received phone threat before Breivik attacks'

OSLO - Agence France-Presse
Norway received phone threat before Breivik attacks

Bomb and terror suspect Anders Behring Breivik (red top) leaves the courthouse in a police car in Oslo on July 25, 2011, after the hearing to decide his further detention. AFP photo

The Norwegian government received a phone threat just months before July 22 twin attacks that killed 77 people, but police were not alerted to the call, public radio NRK reported Friday.

A man with the same dialect as the gunman Anders Behring Breivik spoke about shooting members of the youth wing of the Labour Party with a calm voice, said the radio station.

He also mentioned a manifesto during the phone call to the government in March 2011.

Due to the disturbing contents of the call, the receptionist detailed it on a written note, but this was never transmitted to police, the Norwegian government services centre said.

"The call was never considered as a real threat but more like a vague and incoherent conversation," Margot Vaagdal, head of the centre's communications, told AFP.

It was only after Behring Breivik's attacks that the police was alerted as the centre "found that a part of which was said was perhaps relevant for the case," said Vaagdal, although she would not confirm details of the call.

On July 22, the 32-year-old right-wing extremist first set off a car bomb outside government buildings in Oslo, killing eight people.

He then went to Utoeya, some 40 kilometres (25 miles) northwest of Oslo, where, disguised as a police officer, he methodically shot and killed another 69 people attending a summer camp, most of them teenagers.

On the same day, he published on the Internet a lengthy manifesto in which he expounded his Islamophobic and anti-multicultural views.

According to NRK, the receptionist had detailed the nature of threats, the name of the caller, his phone number and date.

The government services centre said it did not know if the caller was Behring Breivik himself, and that the note was found somewhere in one of the buildings hit by the right-wing extremist's bomb.

Court-appointed psychiatrists have concluded that Behring Breivik was criminally inance and therefore not accountable for his actions. He is currently being held under provisional detention while awaiting the trial which opens April 16.