The Danish man suspected of killing five people in a bow-and-arrow attack in Norway had converted to Islam and had shown worrying signs of radicalisation, reported Reuters citing regional police chief on Thursday. The attack took place in different parts of the Norwegian town of Kongsberg, 68 km southwest of the capital, Oslo, in which an off-duty police officer also got injured.
“There earlier had been worries of the man having been radicalised,” regional police chief Ole B. Saeverud told a news conference, adding that they are yet to determine whether it was a terrorist attack.
Four women and a man, aged between 50 and 70, were killed in Norway’s deadliest attack in a decade. Reports suggest that police were informed of the attack at 6:13 pm (local time) (4.13pm GMT) and the suspect was arrested at 6:47 pm (local time). While bow-and-arrow was mainly used for the attack, some other weapons were also used by the suspect.
The regional police chief said the 37-year-old suspect, a Danish citizen, had confessed during questioning. The reports linking the suspect to radicalisation were before 2021 and police had followed up at the time, Saeverud added.
Murders, let alone mass killings, in Norway are rare and the previous deadliest attack was in 2011 when far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people.
This time, the police said they are “talking about a convert to Islam” but are “relatively sure” that the suspect acted alone.