Danish citizen charged over bow and arrow attack in Norway town that left five dead, two injured

police searching scene where Norway bow and arrow attacks took place
One of the wounded people was an off-duty police officer. Photo credit: Getty Images.

A Danish citizen in his thirties has been arrested and charged following a vicious attack with a bow and arrows in the Norwegian town of Kongsberg which killed five people and injured two. 

According to a statement issued by police early on Thursday (local time), the suspect lived in Kongsberg. 

He was transported by police to the nearby town of Drammen on Wednesday night.

In a press conference, the town's police chief Øyvind Aas reported the suspect appeared to be acting alone in the attacks. 

"The man has been apprehended... from the information we now have, this person carried out these actions alone," he said. 

One of the wounded people was an off-duty police officer.

The death toll is the worst of any attack in Norway since 2011 when far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people, most of them teenagers at a youth camp in the country.

The attacks on Wednesday took place over "a large area" of Kongsberg, a municipality of about 28,000 people in southeastern Norway, 68km from the capital, Oslo.

The government said police had launched a large investigation.

Norway arrow stuck in wall
An arrow was spotted stuck into the wall near where one of the attacks took place. Photo credit: Getty Images.

"The reports coming from Kongsberg tonight are horrifying," Prime Minister Erna Solberg told a news conference.

"I understand that many people are afraid, but it's important to emphasise that the police are now in control."

Following the attacks, the police directorate said it had ordered officers nationwide to carry firearms. Norwegian police are normally unarmed but officers have access to guns and rifles when needed.

"This is an extra precaution. The police have no indication so far that there is a change in the national threat level," the directorate said in a statement.

Aas said police would investigate whether the attack amounted to an act of terrorism.

Norway's minister of justice and public security, Monica Maeland, has received updates on the attacks and was closely monitoring the situation, the ministry said.