Government considers new memorial at Utøya – neighbours reacts strongly

UtøyaUtøya.Photo: wikimedia.org

The neighbours think they are being overrun once again when Minister of the Municipalities, Jan Tore Sanner (Conservatives), considers the proposal for a new memorial by Young Labour (AUF) and the July 22nd support group.

Leader for the AUF, Mani Hussaini, and the head of the support group, Lisbeth Røyneland, on February 9th presented a proposal for a solution for a memorial for the victims of the July 22nd terror attack. They want to establish a memorial on the site AUF owns on the quay opposite Utøya. The neighbours were not notified about the press conference in advance, to which they reacted strongly.

– We therefore rapidly invited to a meeting with the Hole municipality, residents’ association and the affected neighbours in the area to give their views, says Sanner to Dagsavisen.

At the meeting Sanner made it clear to the neighbours that the support group and AUF’s proposal will now be considered by the Government as an alternative to the original proposal at Sørbråten. The meeting was held Monday and neighbours are still critical.

– We see no dialogue in the meeting, but a presentation of a proposal in which everything is fixed and where we have no influence on the process of selecting of a location, according to a press release submitted by lawyer Harald Stabell on behalf of the affected neighbours.

The neighbours also respond that they are being portrayed as selfish and difficult.

– We feel that we are depicted as selfish and difficult neighbours, when we were those who risked our lives on July 22nd to rescue youngsters in danger. The only thing we ask is for is that our mental health will be considered and that the voluntarily rescuers and their wishes should be regarding a national memorial.

The government originally decided last year that the national memorial for the July 22nd 2011 terror should be finalized at Sørbråten in Hole in 2017.

The proposal was met with fierce opposition from the neighbours, who have do not want to be constantly reminded of the tragedy.

 

Source: Dagsavisen / Norway Today

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