Utoya survivors return to politics


Survivors of Norway's Utoya massacre gathered to remember 77 people who were killed by right-wing fundamentalist Anders Behring Breivik two years ago.

Many of those who died were members of the youth wing of Norway's left-leaning Labour Party.

Dateline journalist Amos Roberts is currently in Norway and has been speaking to survivors of the massacre, some of whom are now preparing to re-enter politics.

"There are only around 30 [who are running for parliament]," he says.

"They've obviously been chosen as candidates on merit and not because of their connection to those events. There are a handful who have a very good chance of entering parliament and many of them are surprisingly young."

"[The events] didn't affect their own positions politically, but it made them feel a lot more strongly about those things: their commitment to multiculturalism, their commitment to creating a just and equitable society, their commitment to combating extremism."

Amos Roberts spoke to survivors who shared typical concerns of young people at the time of the attack. "It's very difficult for them to take those things seriously anymore... one in particular actually said this had been a burden, that she had been forced to grow old prematurely."

"The young woman I spoke to is one of the candidates in the north of Norway. She told me a very powerful story about hiding in the school house in Utoya when Breivik was outside... just an extraordinarily nerve racking time. She talked about realising that she had absolutely no say in whether or not she was going to live or die that day. And the very stark realisation that her life was in the hands of another person. She attended Breivik's trial partly because she wanted to be there and confront him with the fact that he no longer had that power over her."

Watch Amos Roberts' full report on Dateline Tuesday 30th July at 9:30pm on SBS ONE.

Source SBS

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch