Culture shock hits refugees in Karasjok

Karasjok in Northern Norway is known as a capital of Sami culture with long cold winters, equally long light summer days and wide open spaces. Not everyone wants to live there, though, and several refugee families from Syria are suffering culture shock in Karasjok. Like growing numbers elsewhere, they just want to go home. That’s extremely difficult if […]

SAS, other airlines, lift US travel ban

After several days of confusion and chaos, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) was among airlines notified by the industry organization IATA during the weekend that US President Donald Trump’s controversial ban on entry for citizens of seven mostly Muslim countries had been lifted. After a US federal judge issued a temporary restraining order against it, on the grounds it […]

Au pair scandal yields jail terms

The Oslo City Court has sentenced a wealthy Norwegian investor and his wife to five months in prison each, in a case that has highlighted abuse of Norway’s au pair program. It’s supposed to serve as a cultural exchange for young people from abroad but the couple, aided by two neighbours, was found guilty of fraudulently and illegally using two young women from the Philippines […]

Foreign minister upholds Trump criticism

Foreign Minister Børge Brende addressed the Norwegian Parliament on Wednesday with a promise to maintain the government’s criticism of US President Donald J Trump’s new ban on refugees and travelers from seven mostly Muslim countries. He declined, however, to call in the man now in charge at the US Embassy in Oslo, to express a rebuke […]

Immigration tests the welfare state

Norway has not succeeded in ushering refugees and many other immigrants into the workforce, notes the leader of a commission that’s been studying the consequences of immigration. In the long run, immigration can thus challenge the country’s carefully crafted welfare state, according to Professor Grete Brochmann, who handed her commission’s latest report to the government this […]

Former ministers ‘shocked’ by Trump

Three former Norwegian foreign ministers, including one who also served as Norway’s ambassador to the US, are urging the government to directly and more strongly oppose the new bans on entry to the US imposed President Donald J Trump. They also urged close cooperation with European allies in fighting such discrimination on the basis of religion or nationality. […]

Norway slams US’ refugee, travel ban

The Norwegian government, which often has called the US its “most important ally,” was as upset as many others around the world this weekend after new US President Donald Trump banned the entry of refugees and other citizens of seven mostly-Muslim countries. They included a passenger from Oslo on a Norwegian Air flight to Los Angeles, who was denied […]

Sp keen to exclude resident foreigners

Norway’s rural-oriented Center Party (Senterpartiet, Sp) presented two key portions of its election platform on Friday that opponents claim will “punish” foreigners who have residence permission in Norway but don’t hold Norwegian citizenship. The party itself also stands to gain more power on at least one of the proposals, but claims it’s only trying to make […]

Immigration chief ‘misunderstood’

Sylvi Listhaug, Norway’s government minister in charge of immigration and integration, was back in the news this week, exactly one year to the day since she first presented a long list of proposals aimed at toughening Norway’s asylum and immigration rules. This time Listhaug, who has sparked controversy since the day she was appointed, was claiming […]

Prime minister lauded for promoting ‘new word of the year’

Prime Minister Erna Solberg ended up getting credit for introducing and using what Norwegian language experts chose as the “the new word of the year” for 2016: hverdagsintegrering. That literally translates to “everyday integration,” and it’s something Solberg urged to help include new immigrants and especially refugees into daily life in Norway. While Solberg’s government minister in charge […]