Norway PM says attacker turned paradise into hell

An assailant who shot dead at least 84 people at a youth camp of Norway's ruling party turned a "youth...

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An assailant who shot dead at least 84 people at a youth camp of Norway's

ruling party turned a "youth paradise into a hell," Norwegian Prime

Minister Jens Stoltenberg said Saturday.

"Many of those who lost their lives were

persons I know. I know the young people and I know their parents," he told

a news conference.

"And what hurts more is that this place

where I have been every summer since 1979, and where I have experienced joy,

commitment and security, has been hit by brutal violence -- a youth paradise

has been transformed into a hell."

"What happened at Utoeya is a national

tragedy," he said of the small wooded holiday island that was hosting the

annual camp for the Labour Party's youth wing. "Not since World War II has

our country seen a greater crime."

The prime minister said he did not want to

speculate on the motives of the attacks, but added: "Compared to other

countries I wouldn't say we have a big problem with right-wing extremists in Norway. But we

have had some groups, we have followed them before, and our police is aware

that there are some right-wing groups."

"There have been some groups of that

kind in Norway,

but again I will not speculate. We will await the investigation from the police

before we say anything about the case."

Police said at least 84 young people had been

killed, as well as employees at government offices in Oslo, where a bomb killed seven people

earlier Friday.

"It's beyond comprehension and it's like

a nightmare. A nightmare for the young who were killed, for their close ones;

mothers, fathers and siblings who were brutally confronted with death. But also

for the survivors and their kin," said Stoltenberg.

"Each and everyone who was present at

Uteoya is damaged for life. Young people have experienced things every person

should be spared -- fear, blood and death.