Accused spy’s trial begins next week

Frode Berg, the retired Norwegian border inspector from Kirkenes, has been sitting in a Moscow jail for nearly 16 months, accused of spying for Norway. He finally has a court date, with his trial due to begin in Moscow on April 2. Berg’s Russian defense attorney Ilja Novikov wrote on social media that the trial […]

Cyber attacks high on defense agenda

Norway’s defense minister had the threat of cyber attacks high on his agenda when he met with foreign correspondents in Oslo earlier this week, and that was before news broke of the massive attack on industrial concern Norsk Hydro.  Frank Bakke-Jensen referred to cyberspace as the new battleground that potentially poses more challenges than the […]

Muslims met by threats in Finnmark

Muslims arriving at mosques in Norway’s northern county of Finnmark this week were met by placards calling for “revolution” against Islam. The offensive notices promoting a right-wing extremist organization were also found on public buildings and schools in Alta and Sør-Varanger. “It wasn’t very nice,” the leader of the mosque in Alta, Ismail Omar, told […]

Ice-mining project wins some support

A small company’s plans to slice ice out of an arm of a Norwegian glacier has won support from a planning commission in Meløy. It voted unanimously on Thursday to move forward with plans to start up exclusive ice cube production, but any actual production is still a long way off. The ice cube project […]

Sami president hails cultural pride

Norway’s Sami population faces another important year ahead, claimed the president of Sametinget (The Sami Parliament), Aili Keskitalo, in her traditional New Year’s address this week. She led off her speech by hailing a 96-year-old woman for bravely shaking off years of Norwegian indoctrination, and reviving her Sami heritage after 70 years of suppressing it. […]

Finnmark communities lost coverage

Several communities in Norway’s northernmost county of Finnmark were without either broadband or mobile phone coverage on Friday. An error in state-controlled Telenor’s mobile network was to blame. “This can put people in danger, it’s unacceptable,” fumed the mayor of Gamvik in northeastern Finnmark, Trond Einar Olaussen of the Labour Party, to state broadcaster NRK. […]

Lavrov likely to re-visit Finnmark next year

Russian President Vladimir Putin isn’t expected to take part in next year’s 75th anniversary of the Soviet liberation of Finnmark from Nazi German forces in 1944. His foreign minister Sergej Lavrov, however, is likely to attend, just like he did on the 70th anniversary in 2014. Northern Norway remains grateful to the Soviet Army for […]

Nature lovers meet some opposition

At the height of the annual fall hiking and hunting season, doubts are suddenly emerging about Norwegians’ alleged attachment to the great outdoors. A new book is getting rave reviews for portraying an honest and funny aversion to hiking, skiing or spending time at Norway’s iconic cabins called hytter. Proud residents of Northern Norway, meanwhile, decry […]

Calls rise to invite Putin to Finnmark

Next fall marks the 75th anniversary of how Soviet forces liberated Norway’s northernmost county of Finnmark from the clutches of Nazi German occupiers in 1944. Local officials are steadily being joined by other voices around the country in calling upon the Norwegian government to invite Russian President Vladimr Putin to join the solemn anniversary celebrations. […]

Murder shakes a small Arctic city

Police in the far northern Norwegian city of Vadsø are baffled and residents stunned by the murder last weekend of a young Norwegian man, fatally stabbed while on duty at a local grocery store. The assailant is also a young man, one of many who fled Afghanistan and sought refuge in Vadsø three years ago, […]