Norway defends treatment of mass murderer in court plea

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A government attorney says that Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in a bomb-and-shooting rampage, is in touch with fellow right-wing extremists from behind bars and must to be held in solitary confinement.

During a government appeal against a court ruling last year that Breivik's isolation in prison violates his human rights, Attorney General Fredrik Sejersted said Wednesday that the self-proclaimed neo-Nazi continues to spread extremist ideology through voluminous writings and that his correspondence should be monitored, including opening his letters.

The government maintains Breivik is dangerous and should be isolated from inmates.

The hearings, held in a makeshift courtroom in the gym of Skien prison in southern Norway, were due to end next week. A verdict is expected in February.