‘Not a good day for Muslims’ in Norway

UPDATED: A Muslim member of the Norwegian parliament, Abid Raja, was among public figures reacting negatively on Tuesday to news that Norway’s Islamic Council (Islamsk Råd Norge, IRN) has hired a new colleague to handle communications who covers her face and body with a niqab. Only Leyla Hasic’s eyes can be seen by those communicating with her, and […]

More drama at the Norwegian Opera

Norway’s Opera House in Oslo has become a national landmark, but sour notes are sounding once again inside the state-funded building that houses both the Norwegian Opera & Ballet. Soloists have demanded an urgent meeting with the Parliament’s committee on cultural affairs, while a revolt tunes up against the Opera’s new top administrator even before she starts […]

Top sports official forced to resign

Years of conflicts in his job as secretary general of Norway’s national athletics federation (Norges Idrettsforbund, NIF) finally caught up with Inge Andersen on Monday. The board of NIF asked him to resign after a recent flurry of marathon meetings, but he’ll leave with NOK 2 million in severance pay. That’s controversial in Norway, a country where […]

Police failed to respond to calls for help

A family living at Melbu in Vesterålen, just north of Lofoten, was terrified during the night last weekend when an unknown man suddenly began to bang on their front door and refused to leave. He repeatedly tried to enter their home forcefully, pounding on and rattling other doors as well, but when the family called police for […]

DNB pulls out of Dakota Pipeline

Norway’s biggest bank, DNB, has responded to public protests and political criticism over its involvement in the highly controversial Dakota Access Pipeline project in the US, by pulling out of the project entirely. Attention has now turned to whether Norway’s Oil Fund will do the same thing. “We have learned a lot from this issue,” said […]

Secrecy hinders defense of security

NEWS ANALYSIS: The Norwegian government’s insistence on withholding a highly critical State Auditor General’s report on the status of national security has made it difficult if not impossible for police and defense officials to defend themselves from allegations of incompetence. Defense ministry officials claim they can’t comment on the contents of the report, because it’s classified as confidential. Some may argue that […]

‘Security so poor’ it ‘had to be hidden’

UPDATED: Newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) has gained access to a State Auditor General’s report on national security that was intended to be made public, but which the Norwegian government has withheld on the grounds it would further endanger it. The report shows that efforts to improve Norway’s national security following terrorist attacks in 2011 have […]

Ministry mum on diplomats’ asylum

The Norwegian Foreign Ministry was mostly staying silent Thursday morning after news broke this week that four Turkish military officers and a veteran diplomat at the Turkish Embassy in Oslo have been granted asylum in Norway. The Turkish government has reacted angrily to the asylum decision, and demanded an explanation from Norway’s own ambassador in Ankara. “As […]

‘Look to Iceland’ to achieve equal pay

As Norway’s royals and top government officials hosted the first state visit from the President of Iceland in 20 years this week, equality experts were urging them to follow Iceland’s lead in mandating equal pay under the law. “It’s a joy that Iceland is taking creative new steps in the work to abolish unfair pay differences between women and […]

Turkish officials win asylum in Norway

Four Turkish officers and the former military attaché at the Turkish Embassy in Oslo have been granted asylum in Norway along with their families. Newspaper Klassekampen reported Wednesday that the asylum decision is raising some eyebrows, since both Norway and Turkey are military allies through their membership in NATO. That makes it highly unusual for Norway to […]