South Africa’s apartheid figure and clergyman, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, has asked Norwegians, on Monday, to forgive mass murderer, Anders Behring Breivik. The convict is notorious to have committed the most heinous crime in recent Norway’s history. Tutu, who headed South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, met with Breivik’s main lawyer, Geir Lippestad, in Oslo, on Tuesday evening for a debate on reconciliation.
“That is our position and … I think this would be God’s position too,” Tutu said when questioned about the appropriateness of forgiving Breivik, who is serving an extendable 21-year prison sentence for killing 77 people in 2011.
The clergyman said, “God hates no one. We are all God’s children and there are those of us who become bad children but we’re still children, we still belong to the family.” He spoke at a press conference held at the Oslo Nobel Peace Centre, 30 years after receiving the prestigious award. Forgiving Breivik, Tutu told the audience, is compatible with seeing his crime as “the worst possible thing that you could imagine”, while stating that hatred and bitterness are “corrosive”.
Breivik bombed a governmental building in Oslo, killing eight, and shooting 69 others, most of them teenagers, to death near at a Youth Labour camp on the island of Utoeya.
Trond Henry Blattmann, president of the support group for relatives of the victims and the father of one of the dead, it was difficult to forgive Breivik who has not shown contrition for his sins.
“We have here a mass murderer who doesn’t show any remorse and will not change his personality,” Blattmann told a lournalist.
“Quite the opposite, he says that he would have liked to take more lives and that he would gladly do it again.”