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Pain goes deeper under as Norway marks 1st anniversary of mass killing


10:42, July 23, 2012

OSLO, July 22 (Xinhua) -- The high-rising government building stands at its place, an entire year after it was damaged in the strong explosion, just like an injured giant with his body from the chest down to the feet in white bandage.

Sunday marks the first anniversary of the bombing in the government quarter in downtown Oslo and the shooting spree in Utoeya, some 40 km northwest of the Norwegian capital.

Norwegian King Harald V and Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg laid wreath at the site of the bombing attack in front of the government building, where Stoltenberg's office resided.

Eight people were killed in the explosion when the cold-blooded killer Anders Bering Breivik detonated the bomb he made with chemical fertilizer bought from abroad, while 69 youths lost their lives in Utoeya, a small island, barely known beyond Norway a year ago.

"Let's honor the dead by the joy of life, " the prime minister told the 5-million-strong nation in his televised speech before laying wreath in honor of the victims of the twin attacks, committed single-handedly by Breivik, a 32-year-old ethnic Norwegian then.

The offender, who opposes what he calls multi-culturism, failed in his attempt to change the Norwegian society, claimed Stoltenberg, who is so disgusted by Breivik's crazy actions that he have never mentioned the mass killer by name ever since July 22, 2011.

"The offender took many lives and inflicted unimaginable suffering. The bomb and the shots were intended to change Norway. The Norwegian people responded to embrace our values," the prime minister said, adding that "the killer failed, the people have won."

In one year the children passed the difficult road to the tomb to mourn their mother or father while fathers and mothers wept over their beloved son or daughter at the empty bed, said Stoltenberg.

In addition, thousands of others -- siblings, grandparents, friends and colleagues -- have felt the loss and despair, the Norwegian prime minister said.

"It has indeed been a difficult year," said Stoltenberg.

With the perpetrator behind the bars and verdict over the July 22 case due in just a few weeks, life has seemingly resumed its usual and normal course.

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