Construction began Monday on a highly disputed memorial to honour the victims of a right-wing extremist’s massacre on the island of Utøya in 2011. Nine years later, emotions and tempers are still running high.
After several proposals and failed attempts to win support for them, the government finally settled on a toned-down memorial to be built at the dock for the ferry that runs to the island, which is mostly used as a summer camp location for the Labour Party’s youth group AUF.
Local residents don’t want it or any other memorial there, claiming it will be daily reminder of the massacre that killed 69 mostly young people and wounded scores more. They’re still threatening yet another lawsuit to halt the project but government officials are moving forward with all official approvals in place. Any more delays at this point, they say, mean the memorial won’t be in place by next year’s 10th anniversary of the attacks that also killed eight people in down Oslo.