Norway faces a “concrete” terror threat from Islamic militants, the intelligence service has said.
Norwegian security service PST said on Thursday that it has received information about an imminent threat against the country from individuals with links to Islamic fighters in Syria.
Benedicte Bjoernland, the head of PST, said the agency has received “reliable information” from a foreign partner about some kind of attack “within days.” She declined to identify the source.
“It was unspecific about what the target might be,” Bjoernland said, adding that PST has no information about how or when such an attack would take place.
According to an assessment carried out by PST last month, about 50 people have travelled to Syria from Norway as foreign fighters – and half of these have now returned to the country.
The domestic intelligence agency could not exclude that people involved with the threat were already in Norway.
Bjoernland told a news conference that authorities hoped a terror act could be averted by going public with the information.
National Police chief Vidar Refvik said law enforcement would be more visible at border crossings, airports and train stations but reiterated the threat was vague about a target.
The greatest terror threat in Norway comes from Islamic extremists in and around Oslo, PST said in an April assessment.
It was unclear whether Thursday's case was linked to the May arrest of three Norwegian citizens with alleged links to an al-Qa'ida splinter group on preliminary charges of supporting or participating in a terror organization.
Earlier this month, the United States put Norwegian citizen Anders Cameroon Ostensvig Dale on a terrorism blacklist.
One of the gunmen in the 2013 shopping mall assault in Nairobi, Kenya, was a Norwegian citizen.
Norway is still recovering from the 2011 attack by far-right fanatic Anders Behring Breivik, who was jailed for a maximum 21 years in 2012 after being found guilty of murdering 77 people in twin terror attacks in Olso and at a Norwegian Labour party youth camp in 2011. He gunned down his teenage victims with an automatic rifle.
Additional reporting by Associated Press