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Saturday, April 20, 2024

Norway helps fund nuclear security

Norway, known for what’s sometimes called its “checkbook diplomacy,” has once again tapped its treasury to help fund an international initiative. This time the cause is nuclear security.

U.S. President Obama greets Norway's Prime Minister Stoltenberg at the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington

As newspaper Aftenposten reports on Wednesday, Norway has neither nuclear weapons nor nuclear power plants. It has produced heavy water, though, and supports nuclear disarmament, anti-terrorism programs and peace initiatives.

Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, in Washington for US President Barack Obama’s Nuclear Security Summit this week (photo), thus offered NOK 20 million (about USD 3.3 million) to help strengthen the international atomic energy agency IAEA. Stoltenberg was among heads of state invited by Obama to participate in the summit, and didn’t come empty-handed.

Stoltenberg also seized the opportunity to invite Obama back to Norway, and Obama reportedly replied that both he and his wife Michelle would gladly return. It was the first time Stoltenberg had met Obama since the US president was in Oslo in December to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

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