Brende also discussed the situation regarding PR Korea with Trump’s son-in-law
Asian media reported Monday night that representatives from North Korea and the United States are holding talks in Norway. On Tuesday, Sweden’s UN ambassador, Olaf Skoog, confirmed that there are ongoing talks in Norway. Brende is non-commitical on the matter.
While the United States of America and North Korea are holding talks in Norway, Brende discussed the situation with Trump’s son-in-law, according to Dagbladet
Norwegian authorities will not confirm these talks, but Foreign Minister Børge Brende does not deny that North Korea was an important issue on the agenda when he visited the White House.
Does not confirm, does not deny
– We have neither confirm nor deny that conversations are taking place. We never do regarding peace and reconciliation commissions. Generally, it is crucial that the situation in North Korea again comes back on a political and diplomatic track. Anyone who can help with that, should contribute, says Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende (Conservatives), to Dagbladet.
On Tuesday, he met Donald Trumps National Security Advisor, H.R. McMaster, and President’s son-in-law and senior counselor, Jared Kushner.
– We must ensure that this conflict does not escalate and that we can sit down at the negotiating table to find political solutions. Therby avoiding seeing a further development of North Korea’s nuclear program, Brende said.
– What kind of response did you get from the Trump Administration?
– I got positive feedback from Kushner and McMaster that we must try to get it onto a political track.
He stopped in the American capital on his way to Fairbanks in Alaska. There, he will attend the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting of the Arctic Council. On Wednesday evening he will have dinner with both Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. But he does not fear it will be a tense affair, although Trump in April said that the relationship with Russia was at an all time low.
Both Tillerson and Trump met Lavrov in Washington DC Before the meeting in Alaska.
– They try to find areas where they can find together, but there are also areas where they simply disagree. I think what is going to be on the agenda is North Korea and the situation around Kim Jong-uns nuclear program, as well as Syria and Ukraine, Brende told Dagbladet.
Not propagated to the Arctic
In fact, Brende believes that the situation between Russia and the other Arctic Councils is better now than during the Foreign Ministers meeting in Canada two years ago. At that time, Russia had just entered into Ukraine, and Lavrov did therefore not come to the meeting.
– Now he is both invited and coming. That is positive. The conflicts we experience otherwhere have not propagated to the Arctic. That is positive. We should try to keep it thay way, Brende says.
– Is there a danger that Norway and the Arctic could become pawns in a new cold war?
– Not the way I see it now. On the contrary, I find that one cooperate relatively well in the north.
– Why have the conflicts not propagated to arctic regions?
– Everyone feels that they have a self-interest in collaborating. There are huge resources in the area. This cooperation should be based on an international regulatory framework. Marine law and international law have been the deciding rules that has served everyone well, Brende says.