Norway’s prime minister on Ukraine: ‘The war has to stop’

Sep 22, 2022, 4:16 PM | Updated: 4:22 pm
Jonas Gahr Store, Prime Minister of Norway, meets with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Gut...

Jonas Gahr Store, Prime Minister of Norway, meets with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at U.N. headquarters, Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle, Pool)

(AP Photo/Craig Ruttle, Pool)

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Norway’s prime minister, Jonas Gahr Støre, believes the world — with one notable holdout — is on the same page: “The war has to stop.”

“I heard it from China. I heard it from India. I heard it from African colleagues. And I think that’s an important message because Russia has tried to say ‘No, there are different views,'” Støre told The Associated Press on Thursday, following the morning’s U.N. Security Council meeting. “And of course, countries word their opinions in different ways. But in this there has been consistency. The war has to stop.”

As a NATO member whose border with Russia stretches well over 100 miles (just under 200 kilometers), Norway’s geographical and geopolitical location has proved relevant in the context of the crisis. It’s also an elected member of the Security Council.

Støre had a blunt assessment of the way Russian President Vladimir Putin has tried to justify Russia’s actions.

“The narrative of President Putin when he is giving a reason for mobilizing and for continuing the war, I believe that narrative is false. It is not true,” Støre told the AP. “I mean, it’s based on Russia being under threat, pressure, being under some kind of attack by the West. I am a prime minister in a NATO country and bordering Russia, a European country, I belong to the West or whatever you may call it, but this is simply not true.”

Støre does not believe Russia poses a threat to Norway’s own territorial integrity, but labeled the aggression “unacceptable.” He also censured Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s late arrival and early departure from the meeting.

“He chose not to listen to any of the interventions. He spoke and he left after he had spoken, which is, to me, a sign of, in a way, insecurity,” he said.

Since the war’s outbreak, Norway has supplanted Russia as Europe’s biggest supplier of natural gas. Norway has thus far resisted the European Union’s demand for gas price caps, with Støre telling the AP that the limits “would not resolve the fundamental issue, which is that there is a shortage of gas.”

Støre is a proponent of renewable energy sources, particularly offshore wind farms, and thinks that the conflict-driven energy crisis might accelerate the shift — “paradoxically, it will help.”

Norway is a founding member of NATO and within the Schengen Area, but it is not a member of the European Union. While Støre’s party supports accession, the prospect has long been unpalatable to the Norwegian populace.

Støre says a “pretty stable majority” prefers the status quo, but he has seen “some” movement in the opinion polls. Pointing to Sweden and Finland’s recent shift in policy, he said that the war has instead highlighted the importance of NATO.

However, any decision on further sanctions of Russia would be taken in conjunction with Europe, Støre said.

The war and preceding tensions have absorbed much of Norway’s two-year term on the Security Council, but Støre — a former foreign minister — said he’s proud of the role his diplomats have played in trying to resolve other quagmires, including returning a U.N. presence to Afghanistan and access to humanitarian aid in Syria.

“We have been able to be a kind of go-between. When the major powers have deep divergences, we can play that role. And I think we have done that in a way which we can look back at it with some satisfaction,” he said. “There are still a few months left and we will be active until the last day.”

___

For more AP coverage, visit https://apnews.com/hub/united-nations-general-assembly

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Amazon suspends at least 50 workers after fire protest

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon has suspended at least 50 warehouse employees who refused to work their shifts following a trash compactor fire at one of its New York facilities, according to union organizers. The company suspended the workers, with pay, on Tuesday, a day after the fire disrupted operations at the Staten Island warehouse […]
9 hours ago
Democratic Gov. Janet Mills and Republican Paul LePage shake hands following a debate, Tuesday, Oct...
Associated Press

Republican LePage says he would veto 15-week abortion ban

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Former Republican Gov. Paul LePage, who’s seeking his old job back, said he’d veto a bill banning abortions at 15 weeks, delivering disappointing news to abortion opponents. LePage provided the answer in a labored exchange Tuesday evening during the first debate of the governor’s race with current Democratic Gov. Janet Mills […]
9 hours ago
Cyprus' President Nicos Anastasiades speaks during the 9th Environment for Europe Ministerial Confe...
Associated Press

UN officials: Energy crisis shouldn’t delay emissions slash

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — A switch back to coal and other fossil fuels by several countries to weather an energy crisis triggered by Russia’s war in Ukraine shouldn’t compromise efforts to curb greenhouse emissions, United Nations officials said Wednesday. Sonja Leighton-Kone, a senior official with the United Nations Environment Program said lending a sympathetic ear […]
9 hours ago
FILE - This aerial photo shows part of the Bonanza Creek Ranch film set in Santa Fe, N.M., on Satur...
Associated Press

‘Rust’ cinematographer lawsuit settled, filming to resume

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The family of a cinematographer shot and killed by Alec Baldwin on the set of the film “Rust” has agreed to settle a lawsuit against the actor and the movie’s producers, and production will resume on the project in January. “We have reached a settlement, subject to court approval, for our […]
9 hours ago
FILE - A 10-point white-tailed deer walks through the woods in Freeport, Maine, on Nov. 10, 2015. W...
Associated Press

‘Forever chemicals’ in deer, fish challenge hunters, tourism

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Wildlife agencies in the U.S. are finding elevated levels of a class of toxic chemicals in game animals such as deer — and that’s prompting health advisories in some places where hunting and fishing are ways of life and key pieces of the economy. Authorities have detected the high levels of […]
9 hours ago
Geneva, Fla., resident Joe Shaw, top, navigates his flooded street, Whitcomb Drive, Tuesday, Oct. 4...
Associated Press

Florida’s island dwellers digging out from Ian’s destruction

ST. JAMES CITY, Fla. (AP) — Following Hurricane Ian’s destruction, many residents on one Florida island have stayed put for days without electricity and other resources while hoping the lone bridge to the mainland is repaired. Pine Island, the largest barrier island off Florida’s Gulf Coast, has been largely cut off from the outside world […]
9 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Most plumbing problems can be fixed with regular maintenance

Instead of waiting for a problem to happen, experts suggest getting a head start on your plumbing maintenance.
Norway’s prime minister on Ukraine: ‘The war has to stop’