Here's a quick translation of the personal experiences by Mirjam Liu, who lives in Oslo. Thankfully she wasn't around the two areas when the attacks happened:
"I wasn't close to either the explosion or Utøya. I was on the bus and my mother called me a few minutes after it happened. She and the rest of my family was several kilometers north of central Oslo and heard the bang and wanted to make sure that I was ok.
I reacted with disbelief and wondered if it was an accident or a bomb. I probably didn't realize how extensive theexplosion was and thought that it was probably a small thing until I saw it on the news. I'm still in a bit of a shock and it hasn't sunk in how extreme and tragical all of this is. I was also very scared for my own part since the explosion happened in an area where I spend a lot of time. It was just a coinsidence that I wasn't in the area when it happened.
I haven't been out among people after it happened but I got the impression of (both from what I see on the news and Facebook) that people are handling it relatively well. People are shocked and in disbelief, but in good spirits. Those who had the possibility to watch the news quickly got information from the police to move away from the city centre, avoid larger crowds, go home and stay there.
I got the impression that the authorities are handling this hard-to-grasp and difficult situation well. They are keeping the people updated about the situation as well as they can, but I got the impression that it's difficult to get a clear outline. Like I said, I haven't been in the concerned areas and the impressions I have are from the news and TV.
I think that Norway is a target of terrorism because of our participation in different conflicts in other countries like Libya and Afghanistan."
My sincere thanks to Mirjam for sharing her experiences. More information and personal stories from the attacks are greatly appreciated. Are you in Oslo? Leave a comment or email me. More stories and updates to come on the blog.