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Breivik blames 'racist' plot for questions over sanity

Confessed killer of 77 people in July 2011 told court he would do what he could to avoid going to an asylum.

The wreckage of a car at the scene of the Oslo explosion, July 2011.
The wreckage of a car at the scene of the Oslo explosion, July 2011.
Image: Fartein Rudjord/AP/Press Association Images

ANDERS BEHRING BREIVIK defended his sanity as the second week of his trial for the killing of 77 people in July 2011.

Breivik admits carrying out the Oslo bombing and the Utoya island mass shootings, but denies criminal responsibility.

“I know I’m at risk of ending up at an insane asylum, and I’m going to do what I can to avoid that,” he told the court. He also claimed to be the victim of a “racist” plot to discredit his ideology by questioning his sanity and that the questions wouldn’t be raised if he was an Islamist militant.

He also criticised the prosecutor for questioning parts of the manifesto he posted online which showed him in a range of uniforms and describes the Knights Templar group he claims to belong to but which prosecutors says doesn’t exist. Breivik said the prosecutor was trying to support arguments for his insanity by taking parts of the manifesto out of context.

Breivik said he sees “multicultural political activists as monsters” and described the Utoya island Labour Party youth camp as a “political indoctrination camp”.

Though he has apologised to the family of a pub owner who was killed in the Oslo explosion, he has refused to apologise for any of the other 76 deaths. The apology he did offer has been described as “gruesome” by Jon Hestnes, who heads a support group for the survivors and the victims’ families. Hestnes says that apology was an insult to the other victims.

“He’s not in our world. He isn’t, and he doesn’t have humanity at all,” Hestnes told the Associated Press. “The way I slap little mosquitoes in the summer, that’s how he is about human lives.”

Evaluations

Two separate psychiatric evaluations carried out before the trial opened last week reached opposite conclusions on Breivik’s sanity, though the Norwegian Board of Forensic Medicine is still considering the second of those studies, which found him sane.

If found sane and convicted of the terror and murder charges, Breivik faces 21 years in prison – a term that can be extended if he is still deemed a threat to society. If found insane, he could be released from a psychiatric facility after three years, but could be detained there for so long as he is considered dangerous.

The trial is scheduled to continue for another eight weeks past this one. Although yesterday was Breivik’s last day of testimony, prosecutors have applied for more time for questioning him.

Today the trial will be hearing from witnesses to the Oslo bombing, including a government security guard who saw the car exploding on CCTV, journalist Lars Bevanger says from the court.

Breivik to give more evidence on details, motives of attacks >

Breivik planned to decapitate former Norwegian prime minister >

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