Norway Attacks: Explosions in Oslo; Gunman Opens Fire at Labour Party Youth Camp

Violence broke out in Norway today as two separate, now believed to be connected, attacks wounded and claimed lives. At around 9:30 a.m. EDT explosions hit central Oslo, shattering the windows in government buildings, killing seven people and calling into question the safety of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg. At least 15 are injured, though Stoltenberg was not harmed. About three hours after the blasts, a man dressed as a policeman fired shots at a Labour Party youth camp on an island 25 miles from Oslo. A person who has been described as "Nordic in appearance" has been arrested. At least five were wounded in that attack, according to the New York Times, though ABC is citing unconfirmed reports saying that number has died, and, horrifyingly, the Guardian reports that an eyewitness told Norway's NRK broadcaster he saw more than 20 bodies at the camp shooting.

It is still unclear who is responsible for these attacks, though a terrorism analyst at research institute C.N.A. tells the New York Times in an unconfirmed report that terrorist group Ansar al-Jihad al-Alami claimed responsibility.

NPR has a timeline of reporting with links to local sources, and Mother Jones has a good breakdown of the specifics of the attack.

At the Telegraph there is an interesting analysis of who would do this, and MSNBC gets at the why.

For live coverage of the attacks and aftermath, check the Guardian.

Update: 4:58 p.m.
The New York Times is now reporting that at least 16 people were killed in both attacks. The Guardian has more information on the man arrested at the camp: he is Norwegian and Oslo police think he is also connected to the bombing.

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Keir Heath
Keir Heath

Norway is a peaceful, decent, civilised country which suffered unprovoked fascist aggression last century and, having done nothing to anyone except provide more aid per capita than almost any other country, is suffering more fascist attacks simply because it is a soft target. The West, and I may be stretching things at this point in history to include the United States in that category, needs to stand together once and for all and assert its values. That means an end to apologising for believing women are equal, that freedom for all is sacrosanct and that tolerance for others extends to those who enter their countries voluntarily to live. That means speaking out once in a while when clear acts of violence and aggression take place and strive to work concertedly to punish those that commit acts of barbarism. When Gaddafi slaughters his own population and half of Europe dither and do nothing, it deserves to be seen as weak and lacking convictions. When here in Germany nuclear power is to be ended for moral reasons but the state does nothing to prevent Iran from abusing it, one must question the value of our civilisation. And above all, it is about time we stopped appeasing China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and so on when together, when we still have influence and some degree of integrity left, unite to stand up as strongly for those values and beliefs we in the past sacrificed blood and treasure for as our rivals and enemies do.

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