Norwegian police are no longer armed on a daily basis, after police intelligence unit PST determined that the terror threat against Norway has declined. PST now categorizes the terror threat as “moderate,” and that neither right-wing extremists nor Islamists are as active as earlier assessed.
“With a reduced terror threat, the police’s reason to keep carrying a weapon has diminished as well,” Benedicte Bjørnland, director of Norway’s national police force, told news bureau NTB.
Police in Norway have now gone back to being mostly unarmed. “It’s difficult to predict how the threat situation will develop, but when it’s no longer viewed as sharp, the arming of police must end,” Bjørnland said. She noted, however, that the situation can change quickly, and police are prepared to re-arm.
“There’s a fundamental belief (in Norway) that police must exert the least amount of power possible,” Bjørnland said. “Use of firearms is viewed as a last resort.”