LONDON (Reuters) - A fringe European anti-Islamist lobby group said Saturday the man suspected of Norway’s gun and bomb massacre had tried to join their Facebook group on the Internet but had been rejected over his apparent neo-Nazi links.
Anders Gravers, founder of Stop Islamization of Europe (SIOE), said Anders Behring Breivik had made the application around 18 months ago.
Breivik said in an Internet posting in December 2009 (here) he had had discussions with SIOE, but Gravers said his organization had no record of this.
“He has never been in contact with us and he has never given us any advice,” Gravers told Reuters.
But he said it was possible Breivik had attended one of its demonstrations.
He said an SIOE member in the Faroe Islands had checked Breivik’s Facebook “friends” on the social media site when he tried to join and discovered one who used a picture of Danish neo-Nazi leader Jonni Hansen as his profile picture.
“He advised us not to allow this guy to join or be able to post on the Facebook wall (message page),” said SIOE co-founder Stephen Gash.
SOIE, which says it has 30,000 followers on Facebook, was founded by Gravers and Gash in 2007 with the aim of “preventing Islam becoming a dominant political force in Europe.”
Gash said the organization is apolitical and opposes both Islam and Nazism.
It held its first demonstration in 2007 in Brussels on the anniversary of the September 11 attacks on New York, despite authorities banning the event.
Reporting by Tim Castle; Editing by Sophie Hares