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Suspect says collaborator 'cells' remain

Put into solitary confinement

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OSLO, Norway -- The self-described perpetrator of Norway's deadly bombing and shooting rampage was ordered held in solitary confinement Monday after calmly telling a court two other cells of collaborators stood ready to join his murderous campaign.

Anders Behring Breivik, who has admitted bombing the capital and opening fire on a youth group retreat on an island resort, told authorities he expects to spend the rest of his life in prison. Declaring he wanted to save Europe from "Muslim domination," he entered a plea of not guilty that will guarantee him future court hearings and opportunities to address the public, even indirectly.

Death toll overestimated

STOCKHOLM -- Norwegian police said Monday the double-counting of bodies in the chaotic aftermath of a shooting spree may have contributed to a dramatic overestimate of the number of people slain, but they offered few other details about the error.

The sharp reduction in the death toll, from 86 to 68, added to a list of police missteps. Officers took 90 minutes to arrive after the first shot was fired at youth gathering for a political party retreat on an island resort. People who called emergency services from the island have reported being told by operators to stay off the lines unless they were calling about an earlier bombing in the capital carried out by the same attacker.

Police also raised the number of dead in Friday's bomb blast in the capital's government quarter to eight, from seven. The total number of people confirmed killed in the twin attacks is now 76, down from 93.

Police blamed the mix-up on thååe chaotic situation that erupted on Utoya island when police and rescue workers tried to sort the injured from the dead under mounting pressure to reveal that the number of slain youths was much higher than originally reported.

Suspect cited Canadians

TORONTO -- Several Canadians were stunned at learning Norway's confessed mass murderer had referenced them in his lengthy diatribe against Muslims, Marxists and multiculturalism.

One of them, a science student, said he was dismayed to find himself quoted in Anders Behring Breivik's 1,518-page manifesto 2083, which makes more than 40 mostly passing references to Canada and Canadians.

"It's just an unbelievable thing to see your name associated with this when you're not yourself associated with anything of this kind," Eric Da Silva, a PhD science student at Hamilton's McMaster University, said Monday.

Five years ago, when Da Silva was president of Ryerson University's Catholic Students Association, he was quoted in a campus newspaper in a dispute over how Muslims were using a multi-faith room on campus.

Breivik, 32, cites the article to support his views equating Islam with fascism and that Muslims are incorrigible supremacists. "What had happened was taken out of context," Da Silva said.

Noted Canadian author Naomi Klein said it was "harrowing" to learn Breivik talks in his manifesto about reading the first few chapters of her book Shock Doctrine.

Those chapters deal with the cleansing of the political left in Latin America. "I'm deeply distraught over the (camp) incident," Klein said.

Book of condolences

OTTAWA -- The Norwegian Embassy in Ottawa has opened a book of condolences for Canadians to sign in the wake of last week's attacks.

Inside the embassy, foreign dignitaries and Canadian officials paid their respects to the fallen by signing a book of condolences in a boardroom lit only by a single white candle.

"We are sad and in shock over the terrible crime that has claimed so many Norwegian lives," read one inscription.

"We mourn with the Norwegian people and our sympathy is with the families of the victims and our solidarity is with all those who suffered from this senseless deed." 

-- from the news services

Norway has been stunned by the attacks and riveted by Breivik's paranoid and disturbing writings. Hundreds thronged the courthouse, hoping to get their first glimpse of the man blamed for the deaths of 76 people -- lowered Monday from 93. At one point, a car drove through the crowd and onlookers beat it with their fists, thinking Breivik might be inside.

Still, tens of thousands of Norwegians also defied his rhetoric of hate to gather in central Oslo to mourn the victims and lay thousands of flowers around the city.

Police believe Breivik, 32, acted alone, despite his grand claims in a 1,500-page manifesto that he belonged to a modern group of crusaders. But they have not completely ruled out that he had accomplices.

Judge Kim Heger ordered Breivik held for eight weeks, including four in isolation, noting his reference to "two more cells within our organization."

In an interview published Monday, Breivik's estranged father said he wished his son had killed himself instead of unleashing his rage on innocent people.

The outpouring of emotion stood in stark contrast to what prosecutor Christian Hatlo described as Breivik's calm demeanour at the hearing, which was closed to the public over security concerns and to prevent a public airing of his extremist views. Hatlo said he "seemed unaffected by what has happened."

By contrast, Breivik, who donned a police uniform as part of a ruse to draw campers to him, appeared in total control during the island rampage, police official Odd Reidar Humlegaard said.

"He's been merciless," Humlegaard said.

Authorities say Breivik used two weapons during the island attack -- both bought legally, according to his manifesto. A doctor treating victims told The Associated Press the gunman used illegal "dum-dum"-style bullets designed to disintegrate inside the body and cause maximum internal damage.

Breivik faces 21 years in prison for the terrorism charges, but he has told authorities he never expects to be released. While 21 years is the stiffest sentence a Norwegian judge can hand down, a special sentence can be given to prisoners deemed a danger to society who are locked up for 20-year sentences that can be renewed indefinitely.

Oslo began to get back to normal Monday, with shops opening and the tram running.

The entire country paused for a minute of silence in honour of the victims, then later in the day, 150,000 people filled the city's streets to mourn the dead with a rose vigil that ended in the heart of the city. Afterward, entire streets were awash in flowers; roses also decorated the fences that blocked off Friday's bomb site.

Crown Prince Haakon spoke "of a street being filled with love," bringing his wife, Crown Princess Mette-Marit, to tears. "We have the power to meet hate with togetherness. We have chosen what we stand for," he said.

Breivik has pilloried Norway's openness and embrace of immigrants, saying his attacks were intended to start a revolution to inspire Norwegians to retake their country from Muslims. He blames liberals for championing multiculturalism over Norway's "indigenous" culture.

"The operation was not to kill as many people as possible but to give a strong signal that could not be misunderstood that as long as the Labor Party keeps driving its ideological lie and keeps deconstructing Norwegian culture and mass-importing Muslims, then they must assume responsibility for this treason," according to the English translation of Judge Heger's ruling.

Breivik has claimed the killings were meant to wake people up to these problems and to serve as "marketing" for his manifesto.

Heger, however, denied Breivik the public stage he wanted to air his extremist views by closing Monday's court hearing and ordering him cut off from the world for eight weeks, without access to visitors, mail or media. For four of those, he will be in complete isolation. Typically, the accused is brought to court every four weeks while prosecutors prepare their case, so a judge can approve his continued detention. Longer periods are not unusual in serious cases.

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 26, 2011 A8

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