Center Party: Let Israel into NATO?

Center Party (Senterpartiet, Sp) deputy Ola Borten Moe proposed a radical new suggestion to deal with the ongoing Middle East conflict on Tuesday – inviting Israel to join NATO. He said rather than boycott Israeli goods, Norway should build stronger relationships with Israel, and help integrate the country into safe and economically stable European communities. […]

Norwegian politicians condemn Israel

Pro-Palestinian and former Conservative (Høyre) prime minister Kåre Willoch joined the chorus of condemnation on Friday against Israel’s ongoing attacks and blockade of the Gaza Strip. Foreign Minister Børge Brende, who was forced to shelter from Hamas rockets during a Middle East visit this week, also sharply criticized Israel for escalating its attacks. “What we […]

‘Norway should drop Mideast broker role’

Norway’s Socialist Left party (Sosialistisk Venstreparti, SV) argued over the weekend that the government should accept that its role as a mediator between the Israelis and Palestinians was not yielding results. Claiming that no genuine peace process was underway, SV’s deputy leader Bård Vegar Solhjell said Norway should instead put pressure on Israel to pull […]

Norway pushes again for peace

UPDATED: An optimistic Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide was back in the Middle East this week to make another attempt at prodding along new peace talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Some say he’s far too optimistic, as he tries to push through the two-state solution that was agreed in Oslo 20 years […]

Norway supports Palestinian state

Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre confirmed over the weekend that Norway will support the Palestinians’ request for full membership in the United Nations and is “ready” to recognize a Palestinian state. As the UN’s 66th General Assembly gets underway in New York this week, Norway faces an important but difficult role in the Palestinians’ ongoing […]

Støre urges more aid for Palestinians

Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre warns that the Palestinians face a serious economic crisis because of a lack of financial support for the Palestinian authorities. He urged donor nations to make an extra contribution, especially those in neighboring and Arabic countries. Norway heads the group of countries that meets regularly to coordinate financial aid for […]

Abbas launches state initiative in Oslo

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has been in Oslo this week, where he launched a new drive towards statehood by signing an agreement with Norway that upgrades the Palestinians’ representative office in Oslo to an embassy. Norway remained non-committal, though, towards formally recognizing a new Palestinian state in the United Nations. Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr […]

Aid group bashes Støre over Gaza

Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre is being bashed by both aid workers and even some of his own Labour Party colleagues, after he refused to say whether Israel’s blockade of Gaza is illegal. Several Norwegians are on board vessels that are keen on breaking the blockade but remain stuck in Greece. Humanitarian organization Norsk […]

Peres criticizes Norway on Hamas

Israeli President Shimon Peres has criticized the Norwegian government’s refusal to classify Hamas as a terrorist organization, claiming that the country has “suddenly changed its standpoint” on such issues. “I do not understand Norway’s position, and I say that as a friend of Norway,” Peres told Norwegian TV channel, TV2. “If they shoot, if they […]

NRK ‘not biased against Israel’

The Norwegian Broadcasting Council has rejected complaints from the Israeli embassy in Norway that Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) has been biased against Israel in their news reporting. The council, which is made up of eight members appointed by parliament and six appointed by the government, “reviews programme complaints from the audience,” and issues raised by council’s […]