Oslo - Norway’s self-confessed mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik told a court on Monday that questioning his mental health amounted to “racism” aimed at delegitimising his extreme anti-Islamic views.
Breivik, who confessed to killing 77 people last year in shooting and bombing attacks, said had he been a “bearded Jihadist”, his mental health would not have been questioned.
“If I had been a bearded Jihadist, there would not have been a forensic psychiatric report at all,” he said. “But since I am a militant nationalist, I am subjected to gross racism. They are trying to delegitimise everything I stand for.”
Breivik, 33, maintains he is sane and wants to be either acquitted or handed the death penalty for killing eight people in a bombing attack outside government headquarters in Oslo and shooting dead a further 69 in a rampage on an island outside the capital.
Breivik said he targeted the youth summer camp run by the ruling Labour Party on Utoya island because of what he calls its “pro-immigration policies”, which he says are a threat to Norway.
Two psychiatric teams reached contradicting conclusions on his mental health, which the main factor at the trial. Breivik has pleaded not guilty and told the court he wanted to be held accountable for the attacks.
If found guilty, Breivik could be sentenced to 21 years in jail and possibly held behind bars indefinitely if found a danger to society. If found insane, he would likely be held in a psychiatric facility.
Breivik appeared angry and defensive during an exchange with the prosecution over a 1 500-page manifesto he published online shortly before the attacks. Prosecutors have said the “Templar Knights” militant group to which he claims to belong does not exist.
The self-proclaimed knight told the court he did not want to “tempt fate” by wearing a home-made uniform in court as he had initially desired because this could be used by court-appointed psychiatrists as evidence of his insanity.
On Tuesday, the trial will centre on the bombing in Oslo where eight people died. - Sapa-dpa