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Norway Mosque Terrorist Sentenced to 21 Years In Jail

Norway Mosque Terrorist Sentenced to 21 Years In Jail

A court in Norway has sentenced the extremist gunman who opened fire at a mosque near Oslo to 21 years in prison. The convicted terrorist, Philip Manshaus entered the al-Noor Islamic Centre in Bærum in August 2019 with the intent of carrying out a massacre similar to that which took place in New Zealand earlier that year. He was restrained before he could kill anyone.

In court, the attacker confessed to being motivated by far-right ideology to carry out the attack.

Manshaus was sentenced to 21 years of prison

The 22-year-old Philip Manshaus, who appeared in court earlier this week, was given 21 years’ jail time for murder and terrorism. The sentence is the longest jail term under Norwegian law.

In addition to the attack at al-Noor Islamic Centre in Bærum, Manshaus was also convicted of killing his 17-year-old adopted sister, Johanne Zhangjia Ihle-Hansen. She was shot four times with a hunting rifle in the family’s Oslo home. Following the killing of his sister, he drove to the mosque in Bærum where he opened fire at the door of the mosque, failing to kill anyone before being restrained and arrested.

In court, the attacker admitted to having been motivated by far-right ideologies such as the concepts of “white genocide” and “great replacement” which claim that Europe is “under attack from people of ethnic origin other than his own” and that “the white race is on the brink of extinction.” Supporting this, investigators found far-right material on him, including a photo of Adolf Hitler on his phone. During the court sessions, he frequently voiced anti-Semitic, homophobic and white-supremacist opinions and refused to admit guilt.

According to Judge Annika Lindstroem of the Oslo District Court, the extremist wanted to kill as many people as possible before setting the mosque on fire. It is believed he targeted the mosque specifically during Eid.

The planned attack was similar to, and is believed to have been inspired by, the attack at an Islamic centre in New Zealand by a self-avowed white supremacist, who killed 51 people while livestreaming on Facebook. He also attempted to stream the attack but this was taken down before it gained any traction.

Although he cannot be released after 14 years, his sentence will be under conditions known as “special detention” which can be extended indefinitely. Johan Overberg, the public prosecutor, said that the fact that Manshaus did not express guilt and said that he would do a similar act again if given the opportunity, means that holding him under special detention conditions is necessary. Fellow white supremacist and possible inspiration for Manshaus, Anders Breivik, who killed 77 in Oslo in 2011, is being held under the same conditions.

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