Breivik, a far-right extremist, killed 77 people in Norway’s
worst peacetime atrocity in July 2011. He killed eight with a car bomb in Oslo
and then gunned down 69, most of them teenagers, at a Labour Party youth camp.
With a shaven head and dressed in a dark suit, Breivik made
a white supremacist sign with his fingers before raising his right arm in a
Nazi salute to signal his far-right ideology as he entered the court.
He also carried signs, printed in English, including one
that said “Stop your genocide against our white nations” and
He was later told to stop displaying them as the prosecution
presented its case.
“I don’t want to see anything of the kind when the
prosecution speaks,” Judge Dag Bjoervik said.
Breivik shook his head as the prosecution made its case,
which included a passage from the original 2012 verdict which said that even
after serving for 21 years in prison the defendant would still be a very
His lawyer Oeystein Storrvik has said Breivik is intent on
eventually securing his release.
Addressing the court, Breivik blamed his crimes on online
radicalisation by a leaderless network of far-right extremists, which he said
had motivated his attacks.
“I was brainwashed,” Breivik said.
“The order was… to re-establish the Third Reich. And
how to do that is up to each soldier,” he said.
Breivik, who described himself as a parliamentary candidate,
also said that he would continue his fight for white supremacy and Nazi
dominance, albeit via peaceful means.
Tuesday’s hearing was Breivik’s first public appearance
since 2017, when he also displayed Nazi salutes in court.
Breivik, 42, is serving Norway’s maximum sentence of 21
years, which can be extended indefinitely if he is deemed a continued threat to
The Telemark court in Skien, southwest of the capital Oslo,
where Breivik is serving his sentence, is hearing the case this week after the
Oslo state prosecutor’s office last year rejected Breivik’s application for
“Our position is that it is necessary with (continued)
confinement to protect society,” the prosecutor in charge, Hulda
Karlsdottir, told Reuters.
Proceedings will take place over a maximum of four days in a
prison gymnasium converted into a makeshift courtroom, with a decision expected
about a week later.
If his request for release is denied, Breivik, who has
changed his legal name to Fjotolf Hansen, can apply for a new probation hearing
in a year’s time, Karlsdottir said.
Breivik lost a human rights case in 2017 when an appeals
court overturned the decision of a lower court that his near-isolation in a three-room
cell was inhumane.
The European Court of Human Rights rejected a subsequent