Oslo: Below are key moments in the first four days of the trial of Norwegian right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik at the Oslo District Court on charges of a twin killing spree which cost 77 lives on July 22, 2011:
After entering the courtroom for his trial, Breivik makes what he has described as a nationalist salute after his handcuffs are taken off, touching his chest and extending his clenched right fist in front of him.
Breivik enters a plea of not guilty at the start of his trial, saying his acts were “cruel but necessary”.
He cries as the court views a film he posted online the day of the attack. His face red with emotion, Breivik’s lips tremble and he wipes away tears as the 12-minute film is projected on a large screen, including photos and drawings of angry Islamists.
The court sees unreleased surveillance footage of his bomb attack, showing people walking near his parked van in the seconds before it explodes.
The court hears a recording of a desperate emergency call for help from a young woman hiding in the bathroom of the cafe building on the Utoeya island where Breivik massacred 69 at a Labour Party youth summer camp. The court also hears Breivik’s own two calls to police to surrender in the midst of the bloodbath, reporting “mission accomplished”.
TUESDAY, APRIL 17, 2012
One of five judges in the trial is dismissed after the court deems him unfit following revelations he had called for the death penalty for Breivik the day after the attacks.
After he takes the stand on the second day of his trial, Breivik tells the court of the attacks: “Yes, I would have done it again”. He says life in prison or dying for his people would be “the biggest honour”, as the judge repeatedly urges him to wrap up his reading of a prepared text, for which he had been granted a half-hour but which went on for 73 minutes.
He tells the trial his attacks were “preventive” to avoid a European culture war and says he should be freed, after detailing his Islamophobic and anti-multicultural ideology.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 18, 2012
Breivik tells the court there are only two possible outcomes of his trial: acquittal or the death penalty, even though Norway does not apply capital punishment.
The prosecutors question Breivik extensively about a network of far-right militants called the Knights Templar, which Breivik claims to be part of but which the prosecution says doesn’t exist, prompting the confessed killer to lose his cool and accuse the prosecutors of “ridiculing” him.
Breivik says there are currently two other one-man Knights Templar cells in Norway “planning attacks” and who could strike at any time.
THURSDAY, APRIL 19, 2012
Breivik refrains from making his habitual far-right salute after objections from survivors and victims’ families.
He tells the court he meant to kill the entire Norwegian government, including the prime minister, and not just the eight people who died when he bombed the government building in Oslo.
He also says he intended “to kill everybody” on Utoeya island, and not just the 69 people, mainly teens, he massacred on July 22, when 569 people were on the island taking part in a Labour Party youth camp. He also says he had wanted to behead former Labour prime minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, who had been on the island earlier in the day.