Police in Trondheim have arrested a man in his 60s after he threatened members of the Labour Party’s youth organization AUF. His threats and assault on a 20-year-old AUF member came after a party leader debate last week.
Several AUF members had gathered outside the debate venue to congratulate Labour Party leader Jonas Gahr Støre. The man in his 60s suddenly confronted them, yelling that “Breivik was right, you should all die,” a reference to the right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik, who bombed Norway’s Labour-led government on July 22, 2011 and then set off a massacre at AUF’s summer camp shortly thereafter. A total of 77 people were killed in the attacks.
The man in Trondheim also attacked AUF member Matthias Solli, and then assaulted a police officer who arrived at the scene. He ended up spending the night in police custody and is now charged with both assaults. He faces court proceedings later this month. Police described him as a repeat offender.
Both Støre and Prime Minister Erna Solberg reacted strongly to his assault and threats, which follow years of right-wing harassment of AUF members. Solberg stressed that it’s “entirely unacceptable” for anyone to be subject to violence or harassment based on their political beliefs, while Støre claimed the incident provides more evidence that words and attitudes can lead to violence.