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Russia includes Norway in list of unfriendly nations

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Norwegian flag flutters on the boat at Aker Brygge in Oslo, Norway. — Reuters/File

Russian media reported Thursday that Norway has been included in a list of unfriendly countries that are conducting hostile actions against Moscow’s foreign diplomatic missions overseas.

According to the statement issued by the cabinet, it stated: “We adopted the Russian presidential decree ‘On the application of measures against the unfriendly actions of foreign states.'” 

“The decree stipulates restrictions, up to a complete ban, on the ability of unfriendly countries to hire staff for their embassies, consulates, representative offices of state bodies and state institutions from among persons resident in Russia,” the statement said.

“So, according to the new order, Norway is assigned a limit of 27 employees,” the cabinet stated.

The government recalled that, in May 2021, restrictions were imposed on the diplomatic missions of the US and the Czech Republic, and in July 2022 the diplomatic missions of Greece, Denmark, Slovenia, Croatia and Slovakia were prohibited, according to TASS news agency.

The flag of Russia can be seen in this picture. — Reuters/File
The flag of Russia can be seen in this picture. — Reuters/File

“The list approved by the government is not definitive and may be expanded, taking into account the ongoing hostile actions by foreign countries against Russian missions abroad,” the cabinet underlined.

“There is another list apart from this one prepared in 2022 to implement the decree on the temporary procedure for the fulfillment of obligations to foreign creditors,” TASS reported.

The countries mentioned on the list are the US Canada, EU, the UK, Ukraine, a number of other European countries, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and countries backing the anti-Russian sanctions.

Norway expelled 15 Russian diplomats for alleged spying in April, and Russia responded by ordering out 10 Norwegian diplomats.

Norway said there was no reason to claim that it had behaved in an unfriendly manner towards Russia, with whom it shares a border in the Arctic.

“Today’s situation is the result of Russia’s war on Ukraine. Russia can itself choose to end the war,” Norwegian Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt said in a statement to Reuters.

“As neighbouring countries we both have an interest in functioning diplomatic relations and channels of contact, not least in difficult times,” Huitfeldt said.

A Norwegian foreign ministry spokesperson separately said that Norway had not yet received an official notification from Moscow, and declined to comment on any specific consequences of Russia’s decision.



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