Norway Massacre Survivors Return to Scene of Killings

Posted August 20th, 2011 at 8:00 pm (UTC-5)
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Hundreds of survivors of last month's shooting rampage that killed 69 at a youth camp near Oslo, Norway, revisited the scene of the massacre Saturday.

Some 1,000 victims and relatives traveled to Utoeya island, where Norwegian man Anders Behring Breivik opened fire at a camp for youth members of the ruling Labor Party. Many carried flowers.

One young woman who survived the shooting spree during the July 22 assault said her feelings ranged from emptiness to extreme grief to joy. She said it was important to return to the place she visited every summer for 10 years, to remember all the good times she shared with friends there.

Some who returned to the island lit candles and laid handwritten notes in memory of their friends.

Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg joined the survivors, along with police, psychiatrists and other personnel to provide support.

Besides the 69 people killed on the island, another eight died in the capital Oslo, where Breivik detonated a bomb outside government offices.

Breivik, a 32-year-old right-wing extremist, has confessed to the killings. But his lawyer has said Breivik denies criminal responsibility because he believes the massacre was needed to save Norway and Europe from the influx of Muslims, and to punish politicians for embracing multiculturalism.

The attacks marked the worst mass violence in Norway since World War Two.

On Friday, a Norwegian judge ruled to keep Breivik in isolation for another four weeks.

Authorities believe he acted alone.