NATO exercise on Corona virus alert

At a time when the Norwegian government is strongly urging against all travel, around 3,000 soldiers from several NATO countries are arriving in Northern Norway this month to take part in annual winter military exercises. A total of 45 had tested positive as of Sunday, but Norway’s defense minister insists there’s no cause for alarm. […]

Defense minister questions spying

Norwegian Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen has taken contact with his Danish counterpart to find out more about alleged spying by the US on Denmark and some of its closest allies. The scope of the US’ alleged spying remains unclear, as does its targets. Bakke-Jensen acted after opposition parties in the Norwegian Parliament demanded more information […]

Old firing range returned to the wild

A huge portion of Norway’s scenic and iconic Dovre Mountain plateau has been returned to its natural state, more than 20 years after the Norwegian Parliament decided to shut down a military firing range at the site. Hikers and outdoor enthusiasts still aren’t entirely welcome though, out of consideration to the wild reindeer also returning […]

Parliament makes defense demands

UPDATED: Members of the opposition in Parliament have begun presenting their own demands for changes in the government’s latest long-term defense plan. Among them: a larger military presence in Northern Norway and hundreds of new defense employees. Both the Norwegian officers’ federation (Norges Offisersforbund) and all opposition parties in Parliament have claimed that the long-term […]

New battles loom over defense plan

NEWS ANALYSIS: Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen still has to fend off more attacks on the government’s long-term defense plan, even after his second-try at winning support for it in Parliament. Opposition politicians and military officers think it’s still too weak, despite government claims that it will strengthen both local and national security. “The government is […]

Frigate loss didn’t hurt Navy chief

He led Norway’s naval defense when naval officers on board one of the country’s five frigates collided with a tanker in 2018 and later had to be scrapped. The frigate disaster hasn’t seemed to hurt the career of Vice-Admiral Nils Andreas Stensønes, though, after he was promoted and appointed as the new chief of Norway’s […]

Russia retaliates in espionage case

Norway’s foreign ministry confirmed on Friday that one of its diplomats in Moscow is being expelled from Russia, after Norway expelled a Russian diplomat last week. The retaliation was not unexpected as both countries accuse the other of spying. Jan Flæte, who carried the title of ambassaderåd at Norway’s embassy in Moscow, is being declared […]

Defense minister downplays US pullout

Norwegian Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen is downplaying local media reports about how the US Marine Corps is withdrawing around 700 troops from Norway. He admits the Marines will have “considerably fewer soldiers in Norway on a daily basis,” but will continue to send personnel to Norway in connection with joint military exercises. “American forces will […]

Man admits selling state info to Russia

Norway’s police intelligence agency PST has charged a Norwegian man in his 50s with espionage after arresting him in an Oslo restaurant over the weekend. He has since admitted selling information to Russian agents that PST considers to be state secrets.  State broadcaster NRK reported Monday night that the man, an employee of Oslo-based classification […]

Frigate sank after rules were broken

Fully 53 of 88 applicable safety rules and “barriers” were broken before one of Norway’s five frigates collided with an oil tanker near its home port nearly two years ago. The Norwegian defense department’s own report also noted that the crew on the bridge of the KNM Helge Ingstad had little experience. “Even though all […]