Speech/statement | Date: 25/06/2022 | Office of the Prime Minister
Today we intended to celebrate love. We would colour the streets the colours of the rainbow. We would display our fellowship and our freedom. Instead, we are filled with sorrow. Once again, Norway has been subjected to a brutal attack against innocent people.
When the perpetrator began firing, our world changed from one of happiness, laughter and love to one of hatred, bullets and killing.
Our thoughts go out to all who lost somebody they love last night.
To those who were injured.
To all who were harmed by the attack, and to everyone who is feeling afraid and vulnerable today.
Two people were shot and killed in the attack. Twenty-one people were injured, 10 of them seriously.
The perpetrator was apprehended quickly, thanks in part to civilians, who along with the police acted heroically to gain control over the gunman.
The Government’s Security Council assembled today and has been briefed on the situation.
The police have deployed all available resources and are now working intensively on the investigation.
The Police Security Service has raised the threat level to Level 5, the top level. This was done because we remain in a state of uncertainty. The message to all of us is to go about our lives as normally as possible, be vigilant, and follow the advice of the police. The Minister of Justice and Security will discuss this in more detail.
We do not know what motivated the perpetrator to shoot at innocent people.
Or why he chose that place, on that night.
But we do know that he belongs to an Islamist contact network, and that he killed and injured people and generated a sense of fear.
And while we do not know if the LGBTQ community was the target, that community has indeed been victimised. And I know that many people are frightened, distressed and furious. To you let me say:
We share your distress. We stand together. Norwegian society as a whole was struck by the shots fired last night.
Together we will continue to fight for people’s right to love whom they want, and to be who they are. And together we will rally around democracy and freedom of expression, and will fight back against the forces that seek to divide us with extremism and violence.
No parade was held today. Instead, we will be taking care of one another. Embracing those who were touched by this tragedy and reaching out to those who may be experiencing difficulties.
It is also important for me to underscore that if this is an instance of Islamist terror, many Muslims will be feeling vulnerable today and in the time ahead of us. I also know that many Muslims are frightened and distressed. So it is our common responsibility to make it clear that no one is responsible for this attack other than the person or persons directly behind it.
Let there be no doubt: we are one community. A diverse and strong community. We will never let ourselves be threatened into silence, scared off the streets, or intimidated into giving up our values.
Today we intended to celebrate love. We would colour the streets the colours of the rainbow. We would display our fellowship and our freedom. Instead, we are filled with sorrow. Once again, Norway has been subjected to a brutal attack against innocent people. Let us rally around our values. Let us be that strong community that we can be so proud of.
I now give the floor to the Minister of Justice and Public Security.