Survivors tell of horror
THE first survivors who were hit by gunshots during the shooting spree that claimed 69 lives last year in Norway took the stand yesterday at the trial of accused gunman Anders Behring Breivik.
“I ran toward the forest. I felt something like a strong air pressure on my back, and after about 20m I suddenly collapsed,” Lars Gronnestad told the Oslo District Court. “I then realised I had been shot.”
Gronnestad, 20, recalled how it was hard to breathe, “it was like a big stone was on my chest.”
Realising he could not remain in open terrain he managed to hide under a tree.
While he was searching for a place to hide he called emergency services and was told to lie down and put pressure on the wound to stem the bleeding.
“I rubbed my face, clothes and skin with soil to make myself less visible,” he added.
Gronnestad said the bullet punctured a lung and smashed two ribs.
Earlier, 21-year-old Silja Kristianne Uteng described how she was hit in the arm but had jumped into the lake, “and swam for my life” until she was rescued by a boat.
The two were participants at a Labour Party youth camp on the island of Utoya near Oslo.
Breivik has admitted to having carried out the July 22, 2011 twin attacks in Oslo and Utoya that claimed a total of 77 lives, but has pleaded not guilty.
The trial opened on April 16 and due to continue until June.
A key issue for the court is whether Breivik will be considered accountable for his actions or not. — Sapa-dpa