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Tuesday, 30 January, 2001, 17:58 GMT
Charges over Oslo 'racist' murder
Grieving friends
Hundreds rallied in memory of the dead teenager
Two neo-Nazis have been charged in Norway after a black teenager was stabbed to death last Friday.

The attack on 15-year-old Benjamin Hermansen in an Oslo suburb has shocked Norwegians and is being described as the country's first racially-motivated killing.

One of those being held, a 21-year-old man, has been charged with premeditated murder. The other, a girl of 17, is accused of complicity to murder.


Killed because he had a different skin colour... a watershed in Norway

Norwegian PM Jens Stoltenberg
Police say three other neo-Nazis arrested after the attack have been released, although they may still face charges. A sixth is being sought.

All are linked to a group known as the Boot Boys and were arrested in an Oslo flat filed with Nazi memorabilia.

"Everything implies... Benjamin Hermansen was killed because he had a different skin colour," Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg told a news conference on Monday night.

"If this is the case, it marks a watershed in Norway.

"We have not experienced something like this before and we must do all we can to avoid it happening again."

Voice against racism

Benjamin Hermansen - the son of a Norwegian woman and a Ghanaian man - was well known as a campaigner against racism.

Norwegian Police at scene of murder
Police scour the murder scene for evidence
Hundreds of people attended a rally on Sunday at the scene of his killing.

The Norwegian Government says it will now step up its efforts to clamp down on racially-motivated crime, although it has played down suggestions of a ban on neo-Nazi groups.

Police believe there are probably about 150 active hardcore neo-Nazis in Norway's population of 4.4 million.

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23 Oct 99 | Europe
Swedes rally against racists
15 Jan 01 | Country profiles
Country profile: Norway
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