2 killed in mass shooting outside bar in Oslo; Norway raises terror alert

OSLO, Norway — Two people died Saturday in a shooting that left more than a dozen others injured outside a bar in downtown Oslo, according to police and multiple reports.

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On social media, police in the Norwegian capital said that several people were “seriously injured” in the shooting. It happened early Saturday outside the London Pub, a popular gay bar and nightclub, according to The Associated Press and Reuters. Officials told Norway’s Aftenposten that they were investigating three crime scenes, one outside London Pub and the other two outside a nearby bar and a fast-food restaurant.

Update 3:47 p.m. EDT June 25: A man in his 50s and one in his 60s died in the shootings, The Associated Press reported. Ten people were treated for serious injuries, but none were considered to be life-threatening. Eleven others had minor injuries, according to the AP.

Update 8:47 a.m. EDT June 25: The Norwegian security service PST raised its terror alert to the nation’s highest level after a mass shooting left two people dead and at least 19 wounded during pride week in Oslo, the BBC reported.

Acting PST chief Roger Berg called the shootings an “extreme Islamist terror act.” He said the 42-year-old gunman, who was arrested shortly after the shootings, had a “long history of violence and threats.”

Update 8:36 a.m. EDT June 25: Police attorney Christian Hatlo said the suspect was being held on suspicion of murder, attempted murder and terrorism, The Associated Press reported.

“Our overall assessment is that there are grounds to believe that he wanted to cause grave fear in the population,” Hatlo said.

Olav Roenneberg, a journalist from Norwegian public broadcaster NRK, said he witnessed the shooting, according to the AP.

“I saw a man arrive at the site with a bag. He picked up a weapon and started shooting,” Roenneberg told NRK. “First I thought it was an air gun. Then the glass of the bar next door was shattered and I understood I had to run for cover.”

Update 8:25 a.m. EDT June 25: Norwegian security service officials raised the country’s terror alert level after Saturday’s mass shooting in Oslo.

“There is reason to think that this may be a hate crime,” police said in a news conference, according to the BBC.

Investigators said the suspect, a 42-year-old Norwegian citizen originally from Iran, was arrested after firing at three sites in downtown Oslo, The Associated Press reported.

Norway’s King Harald said he and his family were horrified, adding that “we must stand together” to defend “freedom, diversity and respect for each other.”

Update 7:01 a.m. EDT June 25: Oslo’s annual pride parade was canceled on Saturday after the deadly shooting outside the three crime scenes, including the London Pub, a bar popular with the city’s LGBTQ community, The Associated Press and CNN reported. Although the motive for the shooting is still unclear, police in Norway are investigating the shooting as a possible terrorist attack, according to the AP.

Norway’s prime minister, Jonas Gahr Store, wrote in a Facebook post that the shooting was a “cruel and deeply shocking attack on innocent people.”

Shootings are rare in Norway, The New York Times reported. Gun owners must be licensed and take safety classes, and a ban on semiautomatic weapons enacted by the Norwegian Parliament took effect last year. That was a response to a 2011 attack by a far-right gunman that killed 77 people, according to the newspaper.

Original report: At least 19 people were injured in the shooting, The Washington Post reported. Seven people were taken to Oslo University Hospital with injuries, one person went to a hospital outside Oslo and 11 people suffered minor injuries and went to local emergency rooms, according to the newspaper.

Police said a person was taken into custody after the attack. The circumstances leading up to the shooting were not immediately clear.

The shooting happened hours before Oslo’s annual Pride Parade, Sky News reported. In a statement posted on social media, officials with Oslo Pride said they were shocked and saddened by the shooting.

“We are in close dialogue with the police,” the group said. “Our thoughts are with the victims and their loved ones.”

(english below) Vi er rystet over situasjonen og følger den nøye. Vi er i dialog med politiet og andre relevante...

Posted by Oslo Pride on Friday, June 24, 2022
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