A drone flying over Oslo’s Constitution Day parade in front of the Royal Palace quickly caught the attention of police. They not only grounded and seized the drone but also intend to file charges against the American tourist who was operating it.
“We have control over the the drone and the tourist who was its pilot,” the police reported on Wednesday, as Norwegians nationwide celebrated their national day on the 17th of May. Drones are often viewed as a threat to national security, either as an instrument for espionage or even attacks on critical infrastructure, oil fields or, in this case, an important building like the palace. Several Russians have also been arrested and deported for illegally operating drones in Norway.
“It was an American man who was the pilot,” police operations leader Bjørn Gunnar Nysæter told state broadcaster NRK. “We localized first the drone and then him. The drone has been seized and the pilot will be charged.”
Norway’s huge 17th of May celebrations attract large crowds, and thousands of school children annually parade by the palace. Security was also high at 17th of May celebrations in Bergen, where police were highly visible and armed, also with automatic weapons.