Norway police release suspects detained in raid

Norwegian police said they briefly detained a number of people during a raid on Sunday on a property in Oslo thought to be connected with twin attacks that killed at least 92 people.

Last Updated: Jul 25, 2011, 00:20 AM IST

Oslo: Norwegian police said they briefly
detained a number of people during a raid on Sunday on a property
in Oslo thought to be connected with twin attacks that killed
at least 92 people.

"No explosives were found at the location and those
detained have been released," Oslo police said in a statement.
"Police have nothing that could enable these people to
be connected with acts of terror."

Neighbours at the site told a news agency that police had
detained six people around midday.

Focus on Islamists let other extremists go under radar

Stockholm: Security services in Norway
and elsewhere in the region had recently shifted their focus
to Islamist extremism, letting other forms of terror slip
under the radar, experts said.

While there had been initial fears that Friday`s twin
attacks might have been an act of revenge for Norway`s
participation in the campaigns in Afghanistan and Libya,
everything changed when it emerged the suspect was a native
Norwegian.

Named by media as Anders Behring Breivik, the alleged
killer has been described by police as a "fundamentalist
Christian" whose political opinions leaned "to the right." He
had also been a member of the populist right-wing Progress
Party (FrP) and was a member of a Swedish neo-Nazi Internet
forum.

For some, the suspect is an example of far-right
extremism, which has got less attention while intelligence
agencies concentrated on radical Islam.

For others, such as Daniel Poohl of Sweden`s Expo
foundation, a leading group in monitoring far-right activity
across Scandinavia, he is representative of a new kind of
terrorism fuelled by anti-Islamism.

The manifesto Behring Breivik posted online showed his
act was prompted by a hatred of Islam, Poohl told AFP, and in
that respect he differs from extremists in violent far-right
groups.

In a report published earlier this year, Norway`s
intelligence agency said that far-right extremists existed in
Norway, but that they had "barely been active in recent
years."

"However, the trend that saw an increased level of
activity in 2010 is expected to continue in 2011," the
Norwegian Police Security Service (PST)`s annual threat
assessment report read.

But the PST noted that "as in previous years, the
far-right and far-left extremist communities will not
represent a serious threat to Norwegian society in 2011."

"The lack of strong leadership limits the growth of
these groups," it said.

Instead, it said it was "primarily" Islamist
extremists "who could pose a direct threat to Norway in the
year ahead."

Robert Oerell of Sweden`s Exit foundation, which helps
those who wish to leave nationalist, racist and Nazi-oriented
groups and movements, said that the focus on Islamist radicals
had favoured far-right extremists.

PTI

PTI