Anders Behring Breivik tells court he wanted to set off three bombs and didn't expect to survive terrorist rampage

Anders Behring Breivik, the confessed mass killer and extreme nationalist who committed terrorist attacks in Norway last year, revealed that he originally planned to set off three separate bombs in Oslo. “There would be three car bombs, followed by a firearm-based action,” he said during his ongoing murder trial in the Norwegian capital.

On July 22, 2011, Breivik detonated a car bomb outside the government headquarters in Oslo and embarked on a shooting rampage at a Labour Party youth camp. He has confessed to killing 77 people, but denies criminal responsibility, claiming that he doesn’t recognize the power of Norway’s courts because they derive their authority from a political system that promotes multiculturalism.

Questioned by prosecutors, Breivik said he planned to plant three bombs: one at government headquarters in Oslo, another at Labour Party office and the third at the royal palace. “I settled on the palace in a setting where the royal family wouldn’t be hurt,” he said. “Most nationalists and cultural conservatives are supporters of the monarchy, including myself.”

But Breivik said he decided against using three bombs once he realized that it would be “much more difficult” than he had anticipated. “When I reached a situation where it was impossible to make more than one bomb, it resulted in a strategy of one bomb and one shooting-based action,” he reportedly told the court. He added that he estimated his chances of surviving the attacks at about five per cent.

The 33-year-old also said that his preferred targets for the shooting rampage were a journalists’ conference or the annual meeting of the Labour Party. But he settled on attacking the youth camp on Utoya Island because he couldn’t get prepared in time.

Breivik’s trial is expected to take 10 weeks.