Støre: Norway must be political initiator towards Russia

Norway can play a role in political dialouge with Russia, says Head of the Norwegian Labor Party Jonas Gahr Støre.

Norway will gain on having a stable and predictable relationship to Russia and should driving force in keeping up the political track in the West’s dialogue with the superpower, Jonas Gahr Støre says.


Neither Russia, Europe nor Norway will benefit from a continued step-by-step escalation of trade sanctions in the wake of events in Ukraine and Crimea, Head of the Norwegian Labor Party and Former Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre says to NTB, cited by Dagens Næringsliv.

But although Norway is affected by Russia’s import stop, there are no alternatives to following Europe in when it comes to taking measures in reply to Russia’s use of military force:

“It would be remarkable if Norway did not stand together with our partners and allies in the reactions towards Russia. But Norway is also clear to voice that the political track must be activated all the time”, he said.

Jonas Gahr Støre was in Tromsø this week to participate in a conference on the High North arranged by the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions. Tromsø is the place where Støre launched the government’s ambitious High North Policy in December 2005.

Støre believes that Russia does not have one decided policy when it comes to its neighbors, but different policy for different neighbors. In 2008 Russia
invaded Georgia, but only two years later the country concluded a peaceful delimitation agreement based on the principals of modern international law with Norway, he said.