Some sort of bomb went off in downtown Oslo, Norway:
A massive bomb shattered Norway’s main government building in Oslo Friday, killing two people police were quoted as saying by local news agency NTB.
There was no claim of responsibility, though NATO member Norway has been the target of threats, if not bombs, before, notably over its involvement in conflicts in Afghanistan and Libya. Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg was safe, NTB said.
NRK radio said at least two people were killed in an attack that may have brought global political violence to the quiet Scandinavian city.
The Telegraph reports that there were several dead and injured. More as updates flow in.
UPDATE: Al Jazeera reports that officials say there were injuries and casualties (unsurprising) and they point out something that may have set this off:
The attack comes days after Norwegian prosecutors filed a terrorism charge against Mullah Krekar, founder of the Kurdish Islamist group Ansar al-Islam, who is accused of threatening a former minister, Erna Solberg, with death.
“Norway will pay a heavy price for my death,” he said. “If, for example, Erna Solberg deports me and I die as a result, she will suffer the same fate.”
It is not clear whether Friday’s attack is related to the threat.
Too early to say, but that sounds reasonable.
UPDATE 2: Got official confirmation (from BBC News) that a man allegedly dressed as a policeman is reported to be on a shooting spree at a Labour Party youth camp on an island named Utøya. Police are trying to evacuate the island. There may have been a lot of “people hit” according to eye witnesses.
And hmm…Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg was supposed to be speaking at the rally…hmm…He was supposed to attend on Saturday, so this could be a sick kind of scheduling error.
UPDATE 3: Reprisal for attacks in Libya? While Norway is getting out of Libya, but when do terrorists ever act rationally? July is the holiday season so the government office with thankfully mostly empty. The relatively light casualty count is about as much of a blessing as can be hoped for.
Also, the Blotter has some good background on Norway and the War on Terror.
UPDATE 4: From BBC’s live coverage, the gunman was using an automatic weapon and is now incarcerated. Police have yet to link the two incidents, and yet to name anyone responsible (completely unsurprising).
UPDATE 5: They are attempting to get people out of Regjeringskvartalet and are evacuating possible places for large gatherings of people like subways. And OH FOR F***S SAKES some clown on BBC brings up the Oklahoma City bombing because of the possible threat of the right-wing terrorists. Good Lord. Sad.
UPDATE 6: At least 17 people killed, at least 11 seriously injured, several hundred injured.
UPDATE 7: Wow. Look at these pictures of the aftereffects of the blast that witnesses say they felt many Kilometers away. Scary.
One of the attendees at the youth camp was former PM Gro Harlem Brundtland. Get the current PM, get an old one. Sounds like the multiple coordinated political attacks from some of the blue-chip terrorist organizations.
UPDATE 8: Police are now confirming that the bombing and the shooting are connected. Ansar al-Islam at one point took credit for this, then recanted. Even though they’d be a great lead, it probably wasn’t them. It’s late at night over there, so there will probably be sparse updates for the next few hours.
Speaking of blue-chip terrorism experts, Howie at the Jawa Report.
UPDATE 9: And final for this post. They’ve detained a suspect, Anders Behring Breivik, and they say he is both the bomber and the shooter. There’s also a Twitter account that looks pretty unused and a Facebook account that seems bogus as all get out. Not that this sort of thing ever makes sense, but a so-called “Christian Conservative” that guns down children and blows up government buildings? Not buying that.
I’m also not buying this guy acted alone. Maybe executed the plan alone, but like I said, none of this makes sense.