A Norwegian man suspected of killing his stepsister and then storming an Oslo mosque with guns appeared in court Monday with a smirk on his bruised face as evidence grew that he sought to emulate attacks by white supremacists in the United States and New Zealand.
Philip Manshaus, 21, was arrested Saturday after entering a mosque in the Oslo suburb of Baerum, where three men were preparing for Sunday's Eid al-Adha celebrations. Police said he waved weapons and fired several shots.
They did not specify what type of weapon was used. One person was slightly wounded before people inside the Al-Noor Islamic Center held the suspect down until police arrived.
Police then raided Manshaus' nearby house and found the body of his 17-year-old stepsister, identified Monday as Johanne Zhangjia Ihle-Hansen, who was reportedly adopted from China as a 2-year-old. Manshaus is suspected in her killing, police said, but they did not provide details.
With signs of his struggle still visible in the dark bruises under both eyes and scratches on his face and neck, Manshaus entered a court in Oslo. In a closed hearing, he did not admit guilt and asked to be set free, his lawyer, Unni Fries, told The Associated Press.
The court ordered him held in pretrial detention for four weeks, two of which will be in solitary confinement.
Norwegian media reported that Manshaus was inspired by shootings in March in New Zealand, where a gunman targeted two mosques, killing 51 people, and on Aug. 3 in El Paso, Texas, where an assailant targeted Hispanics and left at least 22 dead. Dagbladet, one of Norway's largest newspapers, reported that on the day of the attack, Manshaus wrote online that he had been "chosen" by "Saint [Brenton] Tarrant," the New Zealand gunman.
Prime Minister Erna Solberg called the attempted assault a "direct attack on Norwegian Muslims." She suggested that political parties unite to tackle racism and discrimination, including possible legislation designed to thwart hatred against Muslims. Across the country, police have reinforced security measures in connection with Eid al-Adha, which runs through Thursday.
A Section on 08/13/2019
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