‘Bomb alert’ near Norway refinery

Norway-flag12 November 2013, News Wires – Police bomb disposal experts were reported to be on their way to Mongstad in the vicinity of the oil refinery on Norway’s west coast on Tuesday after the discovery of a package believed to contain explosives.

The suspicious parcel, on which was written Arabic text, was spotted at the premises of recycling company Norsk Gjenvinning at around 11:51 CET, local publication Bergens Tidende reported.

The package was found after bomb threats were made in phone calls earlier in the day to a number of installations around the country, including Bergen Airport and the University of Tromso.

Police were reported to have evacuated around 30 employees from the company’s premises, located a few kilometres from Statoil’s refinery, and had sealed off the area pending the arrival of the bomb squad despatched from Oslo.

The military’s diver commando unit has also been alerted and is being mobilised.

“I can confirm it is a bomb threat,” North Hordland police chief Kjell Idar Vangberg told the publication.

Police were meanwhile also responding to other bomb threats, which came a day after Norway’s Environmental Protection Ministry in the capital was evacuated when security guards found a suspicious suitcase on a bus stop bench.

Traffic was halted and nearby streets were cordoned off while the bomb squad investigated the case, which turned out to be empty, state TV channel NRK reported.

A police operative said there had been three to four bomb threats received across the country and “we believe the same person is behind them”.

However, neither the airport at Flesland or the university were evacuated, with both facilities reported to be operating normally after police checks.

The area around Mongstad was though in a high state of preparedness.

“As far as we can tell, the threat at Mongstad isn’t tied to those at the airport or elsewhere in the country,” said Inger Myrtvedt, operations leader of Hordaland police.

– Upstream

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