Researcher bashes Security Council bid

The Norwegian government’s bid for a seat on the UN Security Council is neither worth the effort nor in Norway’s best interests, claims an Oslo-based researcher who also serves on the Norwegian Nobel Committee. Asle Toje went so far as to say that winning a seat can put Norway in a squeeze. “Norway can disagree […]

Palestinian leader seeks help in Oslo

A helicopter whirred overhead and security was predictably tight when the beleaguered president of the Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, arrived in Oslo Wednesday. He left a tense Middle East in the middle of new conflicts and just as votes were being counted after Israel’s latest election thriller, apparently to seek more sympathy and support […]

Venezuelan talks continue

Norway’s foreign ministry, which has been involved in efforts to resolve the political crisis in Venezuela, issued a brief statement this week that confirms the efforts are continuing. “Representatives of the main political actors in Venezuela are continuing the negotiations that were initiated in Oslo,” the ministry stated in a press release on Thursday. It […]

Ministry now confirms Venezuelan talks

Norway’s foreign ministry has confirmed widespread reports earlier this week that it’s involved in efforts to resolve the political and economic crisis in Venezuela. “Norway announces that it has had preliminary contacts with representatives of the main political actors in Venezuela, as part of an exploratory phase,” read the statement issued Friday morning, on Norway’s […]

‘Cautious optimism’ over North Korea

The leader of the Norwegian Parliament’s foreign relations and defense committee described herself as a “cautious optimist” after historic talks between the US and North Korea on Tuesday. Anniken Huitfeldt’s “caution” is tied mostly to the two men involved. Huitfeldt, who presents Norway’s Labour Party and recently returned from a long-delayed visit to Moscow with the […]

‘Norway first,’ but cooperatively

The mood turned playful when Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide joined in for a selfie with her colleague Nicolai Astrup on an unusually warm Friday afternoon in Oslo. They mostly had serious issues on their minds, though, during a meeting with foreign correspondents in the Norwegian capital. “There’s a lot of uncertainty right now,” […]

Norway cautious about Korean talks

Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide is calling new dialogue with North Korea “positive,” but she warns against relieving pressure on the country too quickly. Søreide noted that no concrete results have emerged from talks so far. Søreide was in Japan late this past week to visit her counterpart, Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono. “We […]

Ex-foreign minister defends his record

Børge Brende traveled almost constantly during his four-year term as Norway’s foreign minister, but wasn’t always effective, according to foreign policy researchers in Oslo who have tracked his tenure. Brende instead came across as unclear and literally absent, they argue, but the man who now heads the World Economic Forum disagrees with their criticism. It […]

EU post sacrificed in favor of foreign aid

Of all the changes resulting from her goverment reshuffle, Prime Minister Erna Solberg was getting perhaps the most kudos for her decision to replace a ministerial post responsible for EU issues with one aimed at monitoring foreign aid. It’s forcing a major reorganization within Norway’s foreign ministry, but commentators on both the left and the […]

Norway drops effort to lead the OSCE

Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide is dropping one of the so-called “prestige projects” led by her predecessor Børge Brende. She doesn’t want to spend the time and money needed to campaign for leadership of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), opting to concentrate instead on winning a seat on the UN […]