The shadow of Anders Breivik’s mass killings hang over coalition talks after Norway elections

by , under Enrique

The landslide victory of Norway’s opposition Conservatives  (Høyre) on Monday was short-lived after the country’s next prime minister, Erna Solberg, faced tough coalition talks with the anti-immigration and populist Progress party (Fremskrittspartiet) of which Anders Breivik was a member and whose cold-blooded killings continue to haunt the country, reports Reuters.

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Outgoing Labor Party Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and his allies were able to win 72 seats compared with the 96 that Solberg and its allies won, which is 11 more needed for a majority.

Høyre won 48 seats, Progress party (29), Christian Democratic Party (10) and the Liberals (9).

Even if the Progress party has tried to distance itself from the xenophobic Sweden Democrats and Danish People’s Party, Breivik’s shadow continues to haunt the party as well as the country.

After 22/7, when Breivik gunned down in cold blood 69 Labor Party youths on the island of Utøya (69 dead) and eight more from a bomb explosion in Oslo, life has not changed in Norway but in the Nordic region as well.

The election result of the Progress party lags behind pre-22/7 results. In September 2011, it lost 6.1% percentage points in the municipal elections and on Monday it lost 12 seats.

Even if some believe that Norway has forgotten what happened on 22/7, it’s unlikely that anti-immigration rhetoric and populism can make something so horrific disappear.