In the city of Kongsberg, 80 kilometers from Oslo, a man shot people with a bow and arrow. At least five people died and two more were injured. The motive is still unclear.
At least five people were killed and two others injured in an act of violence in Kongsberg, southern Norway. The Norwegian police announced on Wednesday evening. The injured were taken to the hospital, including a plainclothes policeman. The alleged individual perpetrator was caught.
The act took place around 6.15 p.m. in the center of the city of Kongsberg, which is around 80 kilometers southwest of the capital Oslo. The perpetrator was armed with a bow and arrow – whether he was also carrying other weapons remained open until night. One assumes a lone perpetrator, said the responsible police chief Øyvind Aas at a press conference. There is no search for further perpetrators. The situation is under control. The police are investigating whether it could be a terrorist act.
The attacks occurred in several places in the city, according to the police. The center was cordoned off over a large area. At 6.13 p.m., several people reported to the police that an armed man was moving through the city and shooting people with a bow and arrow, Aas said. The act took place in several places in the center of Kongsberg. Several media reported that a supermarket was the location of the action.
The attacker’s motive is unclear
The background to the act initially remained unclear. It is too early to say whether there could be a terrorist background. Aas emphasized that he could not answer many questions yet. The police did not provide any further information about the alleged perpetrator. He was taken to a police station in the neighboring town of Drammen. According to a TV2 report, the man also had a knife and possibly several other weapons with him.
Several parts of the city were cordoned off by the police. A large number of armed security guards and ambulances could be seen on television. A helicopter and a bomb disposal team were also dispatched to the crime scene.
Police are investigating in the center of Kongsberg: A man is said to have killed several people there with a bow and arrow. (Source: Håkon Mosvold Larsen / dpa)
A resident of Kongsberg told NTB news agency that she heard the alarm go off in a supermarket. She didn’t think much about it. But then she also heard police cars and ambulances. The police searched garages and backyards in the city center with flashlights in the evening.
Incident brings back memories of the past
Norway’s outgoing Prime Minister Erna Solberg was “shocked” by the fact. “Our thoughts go first of all to those affected and their relatives,” said Solberg late on Wednesday evening at a press conference called at short notice in Oslo. She will be replaced at the head of government by the Social Democrat Jonas Gahr Støre on Thursday after her election defeat a month ago. The act did not affect the change of government, said Solberg.
“The reports coming from Kongsberg tonight are horrific,” said Solberg. “The perpetrator committed terrible acts against several people. This is a very dramatic situation that hits the community in Kongsberg hard.” It is important to underline that nothing is known about the incident.
Kongsberg’s mayor, Kari Anne Sand, was also stunned. “This is a tragedy for all concerned. I have no words,” she told the Norwegian newspaper “Verdens Gang”.
The head of government in neighboring Sweden, Stefan Löfven, wrote on Twitter that his thoughts were with the victims and their families. It was a “terrible attack”.
Norway has been the target of right-wing extremist attacks several times in the past. On July 22, 2011, right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people in Oslo and on the island of Utöya. In August 2019, the racist Philip Manshaus carried out an attack on a mosque on the outskirts of Oslo. Manshaus had previously killed his Asian-born stepsister. Several Islamist attacks have also been foiled in the past.