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Norwegian PM: We want to see a high north with low tension

Jonas Gahr Støre and Kaja Kallas Tallinn on November 24, 2023.
Jonas Gahr Støre and Kaja Kallas Tallinn on November 24, 2023. Source: Stenbock House.

Norway is "very closely" monitoring its border with Russia for activity that may be connected to the migration pressure in Finland, but none has been seen yet, said Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Store during a visit to Tallinn on Friday.

"We have the experience of 2015, when we had a lot of asylum seekers coming across the border. We do not want to have a repetition of that. We want to have an orderly border and we are ready to take the necessary measures to have order at the border," he said at a joint press conference with Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) in response to a question from ERR.

"We have a responsibility in NATO to be the ears and eyes up in the north. At present, we have nothing irregular to report. But Norway has an assessment of the situation, we have experience in following developments, and as we say in Norway we want to see a high north with low tension."

Store said Norway, a NATO member, has a 200 km border with Russia and only one border crossing.

Jonas Gahr Støre on November 24, 2023. Source: Stenbock House

The government is getting daily reports on the situation from allies elsewhere in the Nordics and Baltics, he said.

Kallas said authorities know what to do if the situation on Estonia's eastern border escalates. So far 30 migrants have been let through by Russia, a much smaller number than in Finland, and the border guard has sent them all back to.

"We are not under attack yet, we are ready to close our border if necessary but we do not see it is necessary right now," she said. "We have different levels of plans ready, but we are ready to implement them if necessary... We will see what comes next."

Store is on a one-day visit to Estonia.

Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre visited the memorial to the victims of communism in Tallinn on November 24, 2023. Source: Henri-Kristian Kirsip

The prime ministers also spoke about support for Ukraine. Store said the Norweigan parliament has passed a five-year plan that allocates €1.5 billion each year to Kyiv for military, humanitarian, and reconstruction aid.

He called the war a "fight for principles in Europe which are important for all free nations".

Kallas invited Norway to join the development of Estonia's domestic ammunition park.

A joint report about developing Estonian-Norweigan cooperation, especially in relation to renewable energy, was also published. Scientists from both countries will hold a meeting today.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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