Parliament scolds finance minister

Norway’s deposed justice minister wasn’t the only top politician in trouble this week. Her Progress Party boss, Finance Minister Siv Jensen, also faced official criticism from the Parliament’s disciplinary committee, over how she handled the recent crisis around state statistics bureau SSB. Members of the committee have spent several months examining the SSB case, which […]

Solberg survives, praises Listhaug

UPDATED: Prime Minister Erna Solberg received at least some advance notice late Monday night that her justice minister, Sylvi Listhaug, would resign before a majority in Parliament forced her to do so. That saved Solberg’s conservative coalition government from collapse, and Solberg went on to praise both Listhaug and her decision. “Sylvi Listhaug reported to […]

Listhaug quits after losing confidence

UPDATED: She’d lost the confidence of a majority in Parliament and would have been held responsible for the collapse of Norway’s conservative coalition government. Justice Minister Sylvi Listhaug ultimately suffered the consequences of her controversial behaviour by announcing Tuesday morning that she would resign her cabinet post and instead take one of her Progress Party’s […]

‘Mr Lee’ leaves a legacy in Norway

Chul Ho Lee escaped the horrors of the Korean War to become a pioneering immigrant in Norway and its much-loved “Noodle King,” who later was decorated by Norway’s own King Harald V. His funeral this week came at a time when his homeland is very much back in the international news, and with strong links […]

Immigrants boost population growth

Immigrants now make up 14.1 percent of the Norwegian population. Their children bring their representation up to 17.3 percent, according to the latest figures from state statistics bureau SSB (Statistics Norway), after a year that otherwise was characterized by weak immigration growth.  The total number of Norwegian residents with immigrant background stood at 916,625 on […]

Deported Afghan refugees forced to flee

Seven out of 10 Afghan refugees who’ve returned to Afghanistan are forced to flee again, claimed the Norwegian Refugee Council (Flyktninghjelpen) this week. It has criticized the Norwegian government’s program of forced returns of refugees not deemed as qualifying for asylum, and its secretary general Jan Egeland will meet Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide next […]

Somalian leader to probe ‘Koran schools’

Prime Minister Erna Solberg met with her Somalian counterpart at the World Economic Summit in Davos this week, and he promised her that he would investigate concerns about alleged brutality at so-called “Koran schools” in Somalia. Hassan Ali Khaire, who retains a Norwegian passport after arriving in Norway as a refugee in 1989 before returning […]

Ban looms on marriage between cousins

Both ends of the political spectrum in Norway seem to agree on a proposal to prohibit marriage between what Norwegians call søskenbarn, the children of brothers and sisters. The conservative Progress Party and the Labour Party support a ban and will move the proposal forward in Parliament. Norway’s own royal family has earlier engaged in […]

Dual citizenship put up for hearing

The Norwegian government has moved forward with its proposal to do away with the country’s long-standing principle of only allowing single citizenship. It sent its proposal to finally allow dual citizenship in Norway out to hearing just before Christmas. The conservative government coalition’s change of heart on the issue, which has been debated for years, […]

Debate flies over low asylum figures

Immigration and Integration Minister Sylvi Listhaug was predictably delighted by confirmation of the lowest numbers of asylum seekers arriving in Norway since 1995. Others claimed a wealthy country like Norway has no reason to be proud that it’s not offering refuge to many more people who need it. “We haven’t seen more people forced to flee […]