Two hundred kilometres above the Arctic Circle hundreds of refugees and asylum seekers are finding a new life in northern Norway, but recently the doors have been shutting on those desperate to start fresh in the High North.

Media in Russia

The grant will facilitate for more cooperation between Nordic and Russian journalists.

North Koreans with Norwegian Minister of Culture, Anniken Huitfeldt

KIRKENES: The Barents Spektakel festival in Kirkenes is larger than ever. One of the main attractions of the 2012 festival is the five young accordionists from North Korea. See the video of their first performance in Kirkenes.

MURMANSK: Blogger51 is the name of one of the most influential blogs in Murmansk. Everybody reads it, but very few people know who is behind it. BarentsObserver has met with the young web designer behind this news blog in his new hometown of Murmansk.

Pioneering class for joint Norwegian, Russian students in Murmansk is secured permanently as Oslo provides state budget cash.

In the view of the Norwegian authorities, the sentence of two years’ imprisonment imposed on the three women of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot gives cause for concern, says Minister of Foreign Affairs Jonas Gahr Støre.

The European Union has broken down borders and created cross-border unity in a formerly war-torn continent. The EU gets the 2012 Peace Prize for its advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe.

Thor Robertsen, a veteran in Norwegian, Russian cooperation, is awarded the literary prize “Polar Star” by the Union of Writers of Russia for his book “Stories from Vardø.”

Former Finnish Prime Minister Paavo Lipponen does not want to replace Swedish with Russian in schools in Eastern Finland.

Norway’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to expand the Fellowship program for Studies in the High North to include students from Japan and South Korea.

… long as one agrees with the state,” says Alexey Simonov, chairman of the Glasnost Foundation, a Russian Press watchdog.

When the Kirkenes Declaration was signed in 1993, it marked the establishment of a new type of international relations that had been impossible during the Cold War, says Professor Oleg Andreev.

Trond Haukanes from Finnmark is going to be North-Norway’s connecting link to Brussels in the years to come, as the new head of the North-Norway European office.

Newscaster Aletta Lakkala presents the daily 5-minute Yle Ođđasat from the new TV-studio in Inari.