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Norway mass killer wants to go back to school

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STOCKHOLM — Convicted mass killer Anders Behring Breivik has applied for admission to the University of Oslo, testing the limits of Norway’s commitment to rehabilitate criminals rather than punish them.

The right-wing extremist, who killed 77 people in bomb and gun attacks two years ago, wants to study political science, and prison and university officials say he could do his studies in his cell if accepted by the school.

‘‘In Norway, and I’m proud of this, we have a system where inmates, in general, can apply to study at universities, most of them from their own cell, so it will be distance learning,’’ said Ole Petter Ottersen, the rector of the University of Oslo. ‘‘This is a principle that is put in place to help the inmate get back to society.”

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