Norway joins new Russia sanctions

Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide confirmed on Thursday that Norway is attaching itself to new sanctions that the European Union (EU) is imposing against top officials in Russia. It means Norway faces sanctions from Russia in return, but Søreide claims it’s worth the risk.  “We can’t accept that opposition politicians are poisoned with military poison, […]

Russian ‘downturn’ long time coming

NEWS ANALYSIS: Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Jonas Gahr Støre, leader of the opposition in Parliament, could agree on at least one thing on Wednesday: Russian cyber attacks on Members of Parliament and its employees mark a serious “downturn” in relations with Norway. Tensions had already been rising, prompting Norway to step up defense efforts […]

‘Historic’ reaction to Russian hacking

The Norwegian government is mounting what commentators are calling an “historic” reaction against Russia. It was front-page news on Wednesday after Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide blamed Norway’s neighbour in the north for an attack on the Norwegian Parliament’s email systems, and then went public with it. “This is a very serious incident, affecting our […]

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 […]

Russia plans new exercises in Arctic

Just weeks after NATO conducted military exercises in the Barents Sea, and now has forced Norway’s northern city of Tromsø to receive nuclear-powered submarines, Russia is responding with major exercises of its own. Russian officials are calling the NATO exercises off Norway a “provocation,” while the Norwegians say they haven’t been officially informed about them. […]

Russian diplomats tied to spy agency

Three diplomats at the Russian Embassy in Oslo were identified by newspaper Aftenposten on Wednesday as having ties to Russia’s military intelligence agency known as GRU. It’s been accused of murder and poisonings in addition to spying, while Norway’s own police intelligence agency PST claims the “real number” of intelligence agents operating in Norway “is much […]

US and Britain flex muscle in the Arctic

Four US Navy ships and one from Britain have been sailing in the waters off Norway’s North Cape this week, without any vessels from their NATO ally sailing with them. Defense analysts calls it a strategic display of force, which Norway must follow closely. The Kirkenes-based Barents Observer reported Tuesday that the American and British vessels […]

NATO chief also working from home

NATO’s secretary general Jens Stoltenberg has first-hand experience in dealing with a crisis that forced him out of his office. Now he’s been working from home again along with millions of others all over the world, tackling an attack not from a terrorist this time but from a virus. “My life is affected like everyone […]