Norway’s new Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt to meet Russian counterpart Lavrov

Photo: Stian Lysberg Solum / NTB

Anniken Huitfeldt’s (AP) first major task as a foreign minister will be to meet her Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov.

Espionage and security policy will be the backdrop to Monday’s meeting between the two heavyweights in Tromsø. The meeting will take place the day before the ministerial meeting of the Barents Council, hosted by Norway.

Lavrov has been Russia’s foreign minister for 17 years, since 2004, and is considered a key player in international diplomacy. Huitfeldt, for her part, has only been in the foreign minister’s chair for just over a week. But she does have eight years as chair of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee and several important ministerial posts behind her.

Security policy

Huitfeldt did not want to comment on her plans for the meeting until after the conversation had taken place.

“Norway and Russia disagree on many important issues, not least in security policy. Besides, I do not want to go into how this will be reflected in the conversation before it has taken place,” Huitfeldt told NTB.

But developing a good relationship with Russia is important, she emphasized.

“We disagree on a lot, but we also cooperate well in many areas where we have common interests,” Huitfeldt said.


In recent years, the Russians have stepped up intelligence efforts aimed at Norway. Before the weekend, the newspaper Dagens Næringsliv revealed that Russian vessels have also systematically mapped Norwegian civilian infrastructure, such as power and communication lines and pipelines for oil and gas, on the Norwegian shelf in the north.

Recently, NATO expelled eight Russian diplomats and accused them of espionage. This led Russia to temporarily end all cooperation in the NATO-Russia Council, which Huitfeldt describes as “regrettable.”

Relations between NATO and Russia are now at a low point. This could affect Norway’s relations with Russia and make the meeting between Huitfeldt and Lavrov extremely important, analysts believe.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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1 Comment on "Norway’s new Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt to meet Russian counterpart Lavrov"

  1. And it was a very cordial meeting in Tromsø, from what I have read.

    VERY glad to see this. Tusen takk, Anniken.

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