Massive emergency effort saved scouts

Things went wrong at a major gathering of speidere (scouts) in Northern Norway this week. Nearly 60 of them had to be rescued by helicopter during the night after they ran into problems on a strenuous mountain hike, and four were sent to hospital. Around 9,000 scouts from more than 30 countries have gathered outside Bodø in Nordland […]

Winds of fortune blow from the north

More record growth in its fishing and tourism industries, along with more looming oil and gas activity, have made Northern Norway the country’s current driver of economic growth. A new survey also indicates that the north will continue to propel the economy for many months ahead. “It’s full steam ahead here around the clock,” Adrian Jakobsen, […]

Parliament to study Sami, Kven history

All the political parties in the Norwegian Parliament, with the exception of the two government parties, now support a proposal to officially examine the history of Norway’s indigenous Sami and the country’s northern ethnic group, the Kven people. Both were all but forced to adopt the Norwegian language and culture for more than a century, a practice that King Harald […]

Military exercises underway in Arctic

Northern Europe’s largest air force exercises got underway in the Arctic on Monday, just as Norway’s Northern Brigade also kicked off a military drill in the area as well. The two are not connected and military officials have insisted that Russia should not view such exercises as a provocation. Newspaper Aftenposten reported over the weekend that the Russians, […]

Northern Norway’s counties to merge

Northern Norway has long been divided into three counties: Finnmark in the far northeast, Troms farther to the west, and Nordland between Troms and Trøndelag. Now Norway’s vast Arctic area will be divided into just two counties, after a majority in Parliament agreed on Wednesday to merge Finnmark and Troms. Helge Njåstad, leader of the parliamentary […]

Terror suspects grew up in Finnmark

Three young men who have been tied to Islamic extremism in the past three years all grew up in a small town in Norway’s northernmost county of Finnmark. They had all arrived in Norway as asylum seekers from former Soviet republics in the Caucasus and Central Asia, areas that have spawned several others who have carried out terrorist attacks abroad, most […]

‘Sensible’ Brende back in Russia

Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende tried to dismiss his Russian counterpart’s greeting on Wednesday as a joke, but the words from Sergey Lavrov lingered: Brende’s first visit to Russia since Norway’s neighbour controversially annexed Crimea three years ago was, according to Lavrov, “at least a sign” that Brende and his colleagues had understood that they needed “to come […]

New airline faced delay on take-off

A new airline that’s launching routes in Northern Norway, FlyViking, took off for the first time on Monday morning. Its first departure from Tromsø, however, was delayed by stormy weather that continues to hammer the far north. The airline’s maiden flight from Tromsø to Hammerfest was supposed to depart at 5:50am, with its founder Ola Giæver […]

Two Italian tourists caught in Lyngen avalanche

UPDATED: Another avalanche, this time in the Lyngen Alps of Northern Norway, crashed down on a group of ski tourists from Italy on Thursday afternoon. One was rescued quickly, but the other was caught under the snow for nearly two hours before being found and dug out. Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) reported that the Italian skier […]

Grandmother wins tough dogsled race in Finnmark

Elisabeth Edland, a 58-year-old grandmother who’s also a veteran dogsled racer, was first over the finish line in Alta on Tuesday as the annual Finnmarksløpet came to an end. She could hardly believe her victory herself. “Now I feel confident!,” Edland, from Nannestad just north of Oslo, told reporters after a rough last night outdoors […]