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Norway mosque shooting suspect appears in court with wounded face

Norway mosque shooting suspect appears in court with wounded face

A shooting at a mosque in Norway is being investigated as a possible act of terrorism, police say.

On Saturday, Norwegian media reported that the suspect was believed to have put up a post to an online forum hours before the attack where he seemingly praised the assailant in the terror attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in March in which 51 people where killed.

Police said the suspect appeared to have far-right and anti-immigrant views.

A suspected gunman accused of an attempted terrorist attack on an Oslo mosque and separately killing his teenage stepsister appeared in court Monday for a hearing, but his defense lawyer said he "will use his right not to explain himself for now".

Mr Rafiq was among three people inside the al-Noor Islamic Centre when a man burst in with "two shotgun-like weapons" and wearing a uniform and body armour.

A suspected gunman was arrested Saturday after he entered an Oslo mosque waving weapons.

The country was the scene of one of the worst-ever attacks by a right-wing extremist in July 2011, when 77 people were killed by Anders Behring Breivik.

The attempted attack on al-Noor Islamic Center happened a day before Muslims around the world celebrate Eid al-Adha, one of the most important holidays on the Islamic calendar marking the end of the hajj pilgrimage.

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Police sought to hold him on suspicion of murder, as well as of breaching anti-terrorism law by spreading severe fear among the population when firing several guns at the mosque.

The retired Pakistani Air Force officer described struggling with the gunman in an interview with Reuters. Rafiq told the press on Sunday: "I'm thankful for all of the help and support I have received".

"There is no doubt that the swift and firm response from the persons inside the mosque stopped the aggressor and prevented further consequences", Skjold told the media persons present on the spot.

Norway's Prime Minister Erna Solberg called the shooting a "direct attack on Norwegian Muslims". "He started to fire towards the two other men".

He was overpowered by an elderly woman, police said, after he injured one person.

The man had been known to police before the incident, but according to Skjold he could not be described as someone with a "criminal background".

Head of Norway's security police (PST) Hans Sverre Sjovold speaks at a news conference in Oslo, Norway, on August 12, 2019.