OSLO (AFP) – Four young Norwegian Labour Party members who survived rightwing extremist Anders Behring Breivik's bloody rampage two years ago have been elected to parliament, the party said Tuesday.
They were among 33 Labour Party candidates in Monday's parliamentary election who had escaped Breivik's bullets on July 22, 2011, according to Anne Odden, spokeswoman for the party's parliamentary group.
The Labour Party lost nine seats in parliament to end up with 55, and is set to be ousted from government after eight years in power.
Breivik deliberately targeted Labour in his rampage, accusing the party of allowing Norway to become a multicultural society.
After setting off a bomb in Oslo's government district, killing eight people, Breivik travelled to a Labour Youth summer camp on the island of Utoeya near the Norwegian capital.
There he opened fire indiscriminately, killing 69 people, mostly adolescents, before being stopped by police.
Breivik was sentenced last year to the maximum penalty of 21 years in prison, a term that can be extended indefinitely if he is still considered a threat to society.
Monday's elections gave a clear victory to the right, paving the way for a new government that is likely to include the populist, anti-immigrant Progress Party, which once counted Breivik among its members.
The party has clearly distanced itself from Breivik, condemning his attacks, while the extremist has accused the party of being too soft.
Still, the Progress Party remains in favour of very restrictive immigration policies.
With 16.4 percent of the vote, it is down sharply from the record result of 22.9 percent earned in the last parliamentary election in 2009.
Nevertheless the vote is the party's third-best performance ever, and it is also likely to enter government now for the first time since it was formed 40 years ago.
Of the 169 lawmakers in the newly-elected parliament, only three are of foreign origin, including one representing the Progress Party.