The Danish domestic intelligence agency has warned that far-right extremists inspired by Anders Behring Breivik’s attacks in Norway could try something similar on home soil.
PET plans to increase surveillance and police training in an attempt to make it more difficult for terrorists to imitate the twin attacks that saw 77 people killed in Norway four months ago.
“It’s clearly a concern that we have in Denmark and several other European countries,” Jakob Scharf, head of PET, told Jyllands-Posten newspaper. “We have seen a development in both the politically extreme environments and also a general development in terms of solo terrorism,” he added.
PET wants to tighten the controls on the purchase of fertiliser – which can be used to make bombs like the one set at government offices in Oslo – and expand efforts to combat extremist groups. Although far-right groups in Denmark are only thought to comprise of a few hundred people, Scharf believes some of these have made contact with violent sectors, manly in eastern Europe, which might radicalise the Danish clusters and supply them with weapons.
“It’s worrying that we have already seen people become influenced by other people’s acts of terror, and there is a particular concern related to the Anders Breivik case,” Scharf told the newspaper. “The copy-cat effect could be that people become inspired by groups in other countries who have sent letter bombs to their political opponents.”
Justice minister Morten Bødskov said he supports the PET initiatives but would not comment on the specific story.