Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian perpetrator of the notorious Utoya Island massacre, has signalled his intention to start a fascist party in prison. He claims that the purpose of the party is to prevent further massacres of the sort.
In July 2011 Breivik detonated a bomb outside a government building in Oslo which killed eight people. He then went on a shooting spree on the island of Utøya killing a further 69, mostly teenagers, at a Labour Party youth camp.
Breivik, who declared at the time that he was fighting against multiculturalism and a Muslim invasion which he blamed on the Labour party, was ruled to be criminally sane by the Norweigan courts and sentenced to 21 years in jail, a tariff that is likely to be extended. At the time of sentencing he apologised “to all militant nationalists that I wasn’t able to execute more.”
Breivik has this week sent a 34 page letter to news company AFP detailing his renunciation of violence and conversion to democracy, describing himself as an “ex-militant”.
“My heart bleeds as an ex-militant for the barbarity I perpetrated on July 22,” he wrote in Norwegian. “The most important thing in my life now is to make sure that something like this never happens again.”
Breivik plans to create a ‘Norwegian Fascist Party’ (NFP) and the ‘Nordic League’, and claims to have been inspired by the rise of Golden Dawn in Greece. He explained that his choice of the word ‘fascist’ was designed to prevent the new party being labelled ‘neo-Nazi’, writing “since we will be demonised anyway, it is tactically justified to embrace it.”
Norwegian prisoners retain their civil rights so there ought to be no barriers to the creation of the new party from prison. Andreas Skulber, a senior official at the Norwegian justice ministry confirmed the rules, telling AFP: “Nothing in our regulation prevents the creation of a party. He has every right as long as he meets the requirements.”
However, Breivik claims that letters he had written designed to gather the signatures required to form the party were confiscated by prison officials, denying him those rights. His letter included an ultimatum to Justice Minister Anders Anundsen, giving him 30 days to remove the obstacles to the party being formed. If the demand is not met he plans to take the matter to court.
Prison authorities responded to the charge by insisting that they have only legitimately censored letters which could incite criminal acts. “This is absolutely not a deliberate attempt to delay things in order to prevent him from creating a party, but we have a regulatory framework that we try our best to implement.” Karl Hillesland, acting director of Skien prison told AFP.
Breivik has been thwarted in his efforts to create a political party before. In May 2013 an attempt to register the organisation was turned down by Norwegian authorities on the grounds that he was the only member, saying: “To be an association, you need to have two people or more.”
Signing the letter “Anders Behring Breivik, party secretary and parliamentary candidate for the NFP and the NL,” Breivik also promised to “apologise for his actions” if he is allowed to launch his fascist party.