The tragic shootings in Norway have the country mourning not only the lost lives of so many young people but also the loss of the people they could’ve become. More from The Guardian,
Lejla got involved in politics, convinced that words and not weapons were a way to make the world a better place.
That’s how the 17-year-old came to be on the island of Utøya last Friday when Anders Behring Breivik arrived dressed as a policeman with a pistol in his belt and a hunting rifle slung over his shoulder, telling the campers he was there to protect them following the bomb in Oslo – only to open fire over the course of 90 minutes, killing 68 people.
Lejla was attending the youth convention on Utøya as head of the Fredrikstad branch of Norway’s youth labour movement, Arbeidernes Ungdomsfylking, or AUF. On Thursday night she sat with friends around the campfire as they practised a pop song they hoped to perform for the rest of the group the following night. The performance never happened.
Now Lejla is missing, presumed dead at the bottom of the Tyrifjorden, just one of dozens of young activists tipped for the top of Norwegian politics who will never reach adulthood, let alone the Stortinget, Norway’s parliament.
Obama said it as best anyone can in response to such a devastating loss, “To the people of Norway- we are heartbroken by the tragic loss of so many people, particularly youth with the fullness of life ahead of them. No words can ease the sorrow but please know that the thoughts and prayers of all Americans are with the people of Norway, and that we will stand beside you every step of the way.”by