Norway’s police, who have been authorized to carry firearms for the past year due to a heightened threat of Islamic terrorist attacks, will be unarmed again now that the threat level has been lowered, police said.
Norway News In English (h/t Mike F) The disarming order comes just a day after Italian police led a coordinated crackdown all over Europe and in Norway on an alleged terrorist network led by the former refugee and Islamic cleric Mullah Krekar, who’s been living in Norway since receiving asylum in 1991.
Italian investigators claim Krekar’s alleged network planned to assassinate Norwegian politicians and diplomats along with other targets in and around Europe.
The country’s 6,000 uniformed police officers will “have to keep their weapons locked in their patrol cars like they did previously,”he said.
Even though public opinion polls showed that most Norwegians were comfortable with having armed police on the streets, and even felt safer because of it, opposition politicians in Parliament only reluctantly along with the initial arming order.
Norwegian police were authorized to carry their service weapons on their belts in November 2014 after the country’s intelligence service PST raised the threat level because of the risk of an attack.
Norway’s police union, most of whose members want to be allowed to carry their service weapons, called the new directive “a very bad decision.” “The temporary arming (of police) responded to an extraordinary situation. As things stand now, our laws do not allow for systematic arming,” Humlegard said.