Terror threat in Norway “slightly” reduced, says security agency

Authorities remain vigilant, official threat level remains high

July 28th, 2014 10:33 am| by admin

The risk of a terror attack in Norway has reduced slightly, according to the Norwegian national security agency (PST), but police will maintain a high level of national security today, following a warning last week that an extremist Islamist group could be planning an attack.

"The threat level is somewhat reduced," said Benedicte Bjørnland, head of PST, at a press briefing in Oslo. Bjørnland did not say why the agency had decided that the threat level had been reduced.

Bjørnland said there was still a non-specific threat to Norway and that "the threat assessment may change again."

The PST warned at a news conference on July 24 that it had received information about the possibility of an attack somewhere in Norway. It said the potential attack was planned by a small group with connections to an extremist Islamist group in Syria.

Security was immediately increased throughout the country, with armed officers patrolling transport hubs and border crossings.

"That picture is slightly different now," Bjørnland said yesterday.

No official reduction
The national police force said that any official reduction of the security threat level in Norway would still have to wait.

"We will maintain the current security level through tomorrow [Monday]," said national police commissioner Odd Reidar Humlegard at the news conference.

Erna Solberg, Norway’s prime minister, attended a youth football tournament on Sunday, saying that it was important that Norwegians went about their normal activities.

Some Norwegian media reported on Friday that the authorities suspected that the possible terrorist attack would happen today following the end of Ramadan. Authorities have not confirmed that speculation. 

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