Sp: Misinformed about National Guard cuts

National Guard exercise Oter in FinnmarkFrom National Guard exercise Oter in Finnmark, Norway

The Minister of Defense has misinformed about National Guard cuts

Party leader, Trygve Slagsvold Vedum in the Centre Party, believes that Minister of Defense, Ine Eriksen Søreide (Conservatives), unknowingly misinformed Parliament about cuts in the National Guard (Heimevernet).


-I think we never have seen anything similar in Norwegian history, Slagsvold Vedum says to Klassekampen.

Wednesday the newspaper wrote that the Commander of the National Guard, Major General Tor Rune Raabye, considers to resign in protest if the planned cuts in the National Guard are realized.

The leader of the Centre Party describes the threat of stepping down as “dramatic” and believes that the Minister of Defense unwittingly has misinformed the Parliament.

– What the Minister of Defense has said in Parliament, is something quite different from what the National Guard boss says today, and what we have earlier have received of information. But I actually do not think she has done so consciously, even though there is a basic political disagreement present, says Slagsvold Vedum.

Adaptation to reality, not cuts

In the long-term plan for the Armed Forces, it is proposed that the National Guard should be cut from 45,000 to 38,000 soldiers. At the same time, Marine Division is to be disbanded alltogether. According to the newspaper, these 45,000 exist only on paper as not all posts are filled today. The real number is therefore much lower. How much lower is what the HV boss and the Minister of Defense completely disagree upon.

While the National Guard themselves claim that the real number is 40,583, Eriksen Søreide has repeatedly claimed that the goal of 38,000 soldiers is not a cut, but an adaptation to the actual size of the National Guard.


© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today