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The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2015 is to be awarded to the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet for its decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy in Tunisia   The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2015 is to be awarded to the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet for its decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy in Tunisia in the wake of the Jasmine Revolution of 2011.
Help Remove Landmines From the Path of Peace in Colombia
[Norwaynews] [12.05.2016, 08:30pm, Thu. GMT]
Ferney Cifuentes, like so many Colombian children from his area, was helping his father herd cattle in Montecristo in January 2015 when a violent blast lifted the Earth and sent shrapnel flying.

The 14-year-old had stepped on a landmine. His death -- tragically -- was not unique. More than 11,000 Colombians have been wounded or killed by landmines and other unexploded ordnance in the past quarter century.

Landmines are singularly dangerous because they can lay dormant for years, only to kill and maim innocent people without warning. In Colombia last year, 285 people, including 40 children, were killed by landmines, a toll surpassed only by Afghanistan. At current mine clearance rates, decades will pass before the country is mine free.
 
More news
Norway condemns terrorist attacks in Iraq
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 07:19pm, Fri. GMT]
'We were horrified and deeply saddened to receive the news of Wednesday's terrorist attacks in Baghdad. I would like to convey my deepest condolences to the Iraqi people, who are so often the target of terrorist attacks. The attacks are a clear demonstration of ISIL's contempt for human life and norms of human decency,' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

'We were horrified and deeply saddened to receive the news of Wednesday's terrorist attacks in Baghdad. I would like to convey my deepest condolences to the Iraqi people, who are so often the target of terrorist attacks. The attacks are a clear demonstration of ISIL's contempt for human life and norms of human decency,' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Yesterday morning, reports emerged of an attack on a market in the Shia-dominated Sadr City district of Baghdad. 64 people are reported to have been killed and 87 injured in this attack alone, among them many women and children. A further two attacks took place in other parts of Baghdad later in the day. In total, at least 94 people are reported to have been killed in yesterday's three attacks at separate locations in Baghdad, and at least 150 people have been injured.
 
United Nations Top Climate Change Official Welcomes Solheim
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 07:18pm, Fri. GMT]
The United Nations’ top climate change official, Christiana Figueres, welcomed the confirmation today of Norwegian Erik Solheim as Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and applauded the work of the programme’s outgoing head.

The confirmation was announced by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in New York, after his nomination was elected by the UN General Assembly.

“The world is facing unprecedented environmental challenges, demanding serious, capable leaders on many fronts,” said Ms. Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. “The United Nations has such a leader for its top environment post in Erik Solheim.”

Mr. Solheim is currently Chair of the Development Assistance Committee of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. He was Norway's Minister for the Environment and International Development from 2007 to 2012 and Minister for International Development from 2005 to 2007. He will take over from Achim Steiner, who has led UNEP since 2006.
 
Strong ties between Norway and Canada
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 07:15pm, Fri. GMT]
'Transatlantic ties are more important than ever as we navigate today's security policy landscape. Few countries have more in common than Norway and Canada – geographically, in terms of resources, and in what we believe to be important.

Our countries have shared values and experience that can be valuable in resolving the major global challenges of our time,' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Mr Brende made an official visit to Ottawa today, and met Minister of Foreign Affairs Stéphane Dion, Minister of International Development Marie-Claude Bibeau and Chair of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs Bob Nault. He also attended a working meeting with leading foreign policy think tanks.

One of the key topics discussed during the talks was security in the north.

'Ensuring that the Arctic remains a peaceful region requires greater situational awareness and a stronger presence. At the same time, it is in our interest to maintain good relations with Russia in the north and continue our practical cooperation in areas such as nuclear safety, search and rescue and fisheries. I therefore welcome Canada's signals of willingness to resume the dialogue with Russia on Arctic issues,' said Mr Brende.
 
EU to Maintain Border Checks in Five Countries
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 11:40am, Fri. GMT]
The European Union (EU) authorized today Germany, Austria, Sweden, Norway and Denmark to maintain for another six months the border checks in order to curb the flow of migrants to their territories.

The European Commission considered that the extraordinary circumstances for limiting the Schengen Agreement of free movement in those countries still persist, because Greece, where are nearly 66.400 migrants, presents deficiencies in its border security.

The approval covers specific controls on the Austrian-Hungarian and Austrian-Slovenian borders, as well as on the German-Austrian and Danish-German borders, ports included.

Greece and Slovenia voted against this EU decision. Both countries are affected by this provision, and argued that the restriction of movement at the borders only exacerbates the migration-related problems in their territories.
 
Norwegian government seizes children, citing parents’ Christian ‘indoctrination’
[Norwaynews] [12.05.2016, 07:29am, Thu. GMT]
After the Norwegian government seized five children from their family, citing the parents’ Christian beliefs, activists are fighting back to bring the kids home.

The Home School Legal Defense Association on Tuesday released a video documenting the story of the Bodnariu family, from whom five children, ranging from 3 months to 9 years in age, were taken last November.

Norwegian child services, known as Barnevernet, removed the family’s two eldest daughters from school on Nov. 16 without the parents’ knowledge, and later in the day arrived at the Bodnariu home to take two of the three sons.

Marius Bodnariu, an information technician, rushed home from work and went with his wife, Ruth, to the police station to find out what was the matter, but received no answers.

The next day, police arrived back at the Bodnariu home to take the family’s 3-month-old son, Ezekiel, saying Ruth’s emotional display at the police station was a sign that the baby was in danger.
 
Russia’s ambassador to Norway became Russian Railways
[Norwaynews] [09.05.2016, 07:58am, Mon. GMT]
Russia’s ambassador to Norway, Viatsjeslav Alfredovitsj Pavlovskij concludes his tenure as ambassador and heads home to takeover deputy chairmanship of the Board of Directors of Russian Railways.

There is nothing unusual about this and  six years is a long time, says press attache Andrey Kulikov at Russia’s embassy to TV2.

President Vladimir Putin has asked the ambassador Viatsjeslav A. Pavlovskij to conclude his Norway tenure. He has been ambassador since 2010.

The Foreign Ministry confirms to NTB that the ambassador’s official period is over and  that Pavlovskij is returning to Russia.

The Foreign Ministry has been given due notice.
 
Norway’s TV2 ‘plots record cuts restructure’
[Norwaynews] [09.05.2016, 07:48am, Mon. GMT]
Norwegian commercial broadcaster TV2 is reportedly planning to make record cuts of NOK350 million (US$42.7 million) over the next four years.

Olav T SandnesVarious local reports say “shock waves” were sent through the local industry upon the announcement, though the number of jobs lost was not clear, and TBI couldn’t reach Egmont-owned TV2 before press time this morning.

However, the Nordic Film and TV Fund reported employees were immediately offered to apply to severance packages as part of a strategic initiative known as ‘TV2 in 2020’.

“The time for gradual changes in the industry is over and the time for gradual changes at TV2 will also come to an end,” TV2 CEO Olav T Sandnes (pictured) told the board in a statement. “It’s time for us to equip ourselves in the best possible way to achieve further growth.”
 
Maine company to oversee completion of US embassy in Norway
[Norwaynews] [06.05.2016, 06:37am, Fri. GMT]
A Maine company has been hired to oversee the final stages of construction for a U.S. embassy near Oslo, Norway.

Tilson CEO Joshua Broder tells The Portland Press Herald (http://bit.ly/24zqRDf ) that the Portland company started working on the $228 million project in January.

The company specializes in technologically complex projects. It was chosen by the embassy’s lead contractor and is Tilson’s first embassy project. Broder says it will involve 12 American workers.

The five-building embassy campus will incorporate elements of traditional Norwegian building design. Broder says the building will also be energy-efficient.
 
Norway to develop peatland-friendly agriculture in Indonesia
[Norwaynews] [03.05.2016, 06:17pm, Tue. GMT]
The Norwegian Ambassador to Indonesia, Stig Traavik, has said his government is ready to help Indonesia to develop peat land-friendly agriculture.

"Well help Indonesia in mastering how to cultivate plants without drying the peat lands, and how to increase the value added of the plants. There are some plants that can grow without drying the peat, such as sago," Traavik said here on Tuesday.

He added that the Norwegian government will also help to market the commodities produced through peat-friendly agricultural practices.

The Ambassador said in principle, Norway is ready to support all efforts to prevent damage that land and forest fires cause.
 
North Sea helicopter crash: AIBN director general says work has begun to put “together the puzzle”
[Norwaynews] [03.05.2016, 06:45am, Tue. GMT]
The Director General of the Norwegian Air Investigations Branch (AIBN) said work has begun to put “together the puzzle” of what happened on board a fatal North Sea helicopter crash.

William Bertheussen said teams had been working round the clock since the incident three days ago which killed 13 people.

Investigators have said the findings of what caused the crash with 11 passengers and two crew on board could take up to a year to determine.

Wreckage from the helicopter has already been taken to the Haakonsvern naval base for assessment.

Bertheussen said bad snow in the area around the crash site had been hampering work down by teams as they investigate the area collecting evidence.
 
Video shows Norway crash aftermath
[Norwaynews] [02.05.2016, 05:37pm, Mon. GMT]
An amateur video has emerged apparently showing the immediate aftermath of the deadly helicopter crash that claimed 13 lives off Norway last week.

In the brief video, which was posted on video-sharing site YouTube on 29 April, a man's voice can be heard speaking in Norwegian describing the scene of what appears to be a helicopter's rotor blades spinning through the air without a fuselage attached.

The camera then pans to a black plume of smoke behind a hillside, presumably from the wreckage of the CHC-owned Airbus EC225 Super Puma, which crashed on Friday at Turoy, near the city of Bergen.

All 13 people on board the Statoil-operated aircraft were killed, including 11 offshore oil workers and two pilots.
 
Wrecked helicopter fuselage raised from the sea in Norway
[Norwaynews] [01.05.2016, 06:00pm, Sun. GMT]
Emergency crews pulled the wrecked fuselage of an Airbus EC-225 helicopter out of the sea Saturday off western Norway after a crash that killed all 13 people on board.

As aviation experts looked for answers about Friday's crash, a somber-looking Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Norwegian Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit met with the victims' relatives in the western city of Bergen.

"It was a strong experience to meet the relatives. The youngest is six weeks old, the oldest is more than 80," Solberg said after a meeting that last nearly two hours.

The helicopter was carrying workers from an offshore rig in the North Sea — the Statoil-operated Gullfaks B oil field — before it went down Friday on Turoey, a tiny island outside Bergen, Norway's second-largest city. Eleven Norwegians, one Briton and one Italian were aboard. The rig is 120 kilometers (74 miles) off the Norwegian coast.
 
North Sea helicopter crash: AAIB deploys team to Norway
[Norwaynews] [29.04.2016, 09:04pm, Fri. GMT]
The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) said it has deployed a team to Norway after a North Sea helicopter crashed.

The body’s chief inspector Keith Conradi said it had offered to assist its counterpart in Norway following the incident.

A total of 13 people were on board the flight, including 11 passengers and two crew.

Rescuers are said to have found 11 fatalities so far, while the search is continuing for the remaining two survivors.
 
Norway's Statoil enters the German offshore wind market
[Norwaynews] [29.04.2016, 01:28pm, Fri. GMT]
Norwegian energy provider Statoil has announced that it is entering the German offshore wind market, through a 50% acquisition of the Arkona offshore wind farm. Statoil and E.ON also announce the final investment decision on the 385 megawatt project. The estimated total investment for the project will be in excess of EUR 1.2 billion.

The Arkona wind farm will provide renewable energy for up to 400,000 households in Germany, making it one of the largest ongoing offshore wind developments in Europe.
 
Telenor Norway scraps roaming fees in EU and EAA
[Norwaynews] [26.04.2016, 11:08pm, Tue. GMT]
Telenor said it will be scrapping roaming charges in the European Union and European Economic Area (EAA) from 27 April. Customers will be able to ring and text as much as they like, and use the mobile internet allowance included in their bundles, just as they would at home in Norway. This applies both to individual and business customers. The company said 90 percent of roaming by its customers takes place within Europe.

Telenor’s new subscriptions for private customers come under the name Frihet (Freedom) and they can switch to these services free of charge. They will also get unlimited storage of mobile content such as images and videos on the cloud service Min Sky. Other advantages of Frihet are unlimited MMS, larger data allowances and faster speeds.
 
Norway minister mocked for migrant Mediterranean stunt
[Norwaynews] [22.04.2016, 09:03pm, Fri. GMT]
A Norwegian lawmaker caused an outcry after she launched herself into the Mediterranean Sea wearing a life suit, in a bid to highlight the experience of migrants who fall into the sea, Norwegian media reported.

Minister of migration and integration Sylvi Listhaug, who is known for her hardline position on immigration, was on the Greek island of Lesbos to learn more about the rescue work being carried out by crew on the Norwegian ship Peter Henry von Koss when she performed the stunt.

Dressed in a bright orange hooded survival suit, she jumped into the sea and floated for a short time, before being lifted from the water by the crew of the ship in a mock rescue.
 
Norwegian mass killer's human rights violated in prison, court rules
[Norwaynews] [20.04.2016, 07:59pm, Wed. GMT]
Mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik has won his human rights case against the Norwegian government. The self-proclaimed Nazi, who killed 77 people on a bomb and gun rampage in 2011, claimed that he was forced to endure "inhuman and degrading" conditions in prison. A district court in Oslo ruled on Wednesday that the 37-year-old's treatment violated Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. After the judgment, Breivik's lawyer, Oystein Storrvik, called for his solitary confinement to be repealed.
 
Gas imports from Norway, Russia rise as Dutch production falls
[Norwaynews] [19.04.2016, 01:09pm, Tue. GMT]
National gas extraction in the Netherlands dropped by more than a quarter last year to just over 51 billion cubic meters. The decrease was compensated for by imports, mainly from Norway and Russia, according to figures Statistics Netherlands published on Tuesday. Last year a total of some 36 billion cubic meters of natural gas was imported form other countries, almost 50 percent more than in 2010. Imports from Russia doubled between 2010 and 2015 and imports from Norway increased by over 50 percent. Imports from Denmark dropped by 44 percent and from the United Kingdom dropped by 18 percent.
 
Norwegian govt presents plan to ensure digital employment
[Norwaynews] [18.04.2016, 05:59pm, Mon. GMT]
Norwegian Transport and Communications Minister Ketil Solvik-Olsen said a joint document has been drawn up concerning the development of electronic communications infrastructure, with the aim of ensuring digital employment in Norway. This e-coms plan is part IV of the White Paper ‘Digital Agenda for Norway – ICT for a simpler daily life and increased productivity’. It is just as important to talk about electronic infrastructure, as it is to discuss railways and highways, he said.
 
ISIS Branch in Philippines Threaten to Behead Foreign Captive in New VIDEO
[Norwaynews] [18.04.2016, 10:36am, Mon. GMT]
Islamist militants in the Philippines on Friday (April 15) announced a new deadline of April 25 for the execution of three foreign captives and a Filipino, but scaled back their ransom demand in a video posted on social media. The captives - two Canadian men, a Norwegian man and a Filipino woman - were kidnapped from a beach resort on a southern island last September.
 
Norway Uses Oil Wealth Fund Again to Stay Afloat
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 07:19pm, Fri. GMT]
The Norwegian government will tap into its wealth fund once again to sustain government operations, as the sting of a low-priced oil market burdens the Scandinavian country, according to Reuters. Officials have used the fund once before as a rainy day fund and may continue to do so as the economy lacks the necessary revenue. The economy is expected to expand 1.0% in 2016.

As wealthy as Norway may be, its Achilles heel is a non-diversified economy that relies heavily on oil exports. Norway will have to consider diversifying its economy in major ways to lessen the shock of price fluctuations in the energy markets. Because of revenue shortfalls, the government is forced to spend additional money to plug deficit holes.

The fiscal crisis has forced policymakers to reexamine their budget priorities, but the establishment will have to commence negotiations with opposition parties that may not be ready to make concessions. In the meantime, the state has no other choice but to rely on the fund, but the nation’s savings stash remains in trouble as income shortages diminish the overall value of the fund.
 
US President Warns Russia against Military Build-up in Northern Europe
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 07:16pm, Fri. GMT]
US President Barack Obama has warned Russia against its “aggressive” military build-up in northern Europe.

Obama made the remarks on Friday after meeting with Nordic leaders from Iceland, Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark at the White House.

"We are united in our concern about Russia's growing aggressive military presence and posture in the Baltic-Nordic region,” he said.

Meanwhile, Denmark, Norway reportedly agreed to contribute to “enhanced allied forward presence” with the North Atlantic Organization Treaty (NATO).

The United States on Thursday activated a land-based missile system in Romania, despite Russia’s warning against a systematically increasing US-led arms deployment near its borders.

The missiles’ activation marked the penultimate step in the completion of a missile shield, which Washington proposed nearly a decade ago.

 
Obama hosts summit of Nordic leaders at White House
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 07:13pm, Fri. GMT]
His fellow Democrats may be arguing about whether to hold up places like Denmark and Norway as liberal utopias, but President Barack Obama isn't hesitating.

Apparently well past concerns about being branded a socialist, Obama on Friday celebrated five Nordic nations as models of reliability, equality, generosity, responsibility, even personal happiness.

As he welcomed a group of Nordic leaders to the White House, he owned up to thinking perhaps the small, havens of social liberalism should take the reins every now and then.

He joked: "Why don't we just put all these small countries in charge for a while."

The remarks opened a White House summit with the leaders of Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland and Denmark. Obama and the leaders are due to discuss a slate of issues weighing heavily on the region — including concerns about Russian aggression, long-term plans for managing the flow of refugees in Europe and contributions to the campaign against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.
 
Norway to dig deeper in wealth fund to counter economic slowdown
[Norwaynews] [13.05.2016, 11:38am, Fri. GMT]
Norway will take more money from its $858-billion sovereign wealth fund to combat a deeper-than-expected economic slowdown as the drop in oil prices continues to hurt western Europe's top crude exporter. With the price of oil down 60 percent since mid-2014, Norway has raised spending from its wealth fund, the world's largest, and cut interest rates to combat falling private-sector investments and rising unemployment and to pay for an influx of refugees.

Mainland GDP growth, excluding the volatile oil and shipping sectors, is now seen at 1.0 percent in 2016, down from 1.8 percent seen in October and 2.0 percent seen in May 2015. The slowdown meant a further fiscal boost was necessary, Finance Minister Siv Jensen said. "A key priority for the government in the current situation is to support growth and employment in sectors exposed to international competition," she said. Spending of petroleum revenues, as measured by the structural non-oil budget deficit, is estimated to be 205.6 billion Norwegian crowns, up 10 billion crowns on October. This is equivalent to 7.5 percent of GDP for mainland Norway, up from 6.4 percent in 2015.
 
“Norwegian Lycamobile” Reported To Cops For “Money Laundering”
[Norwaynews] [10.05.2016, 07:16am, Tue. GMT]
Suspicious six-figure Post Office cash drops by the Lycamobile group were reported to the police as “prima facie evidence of money laundering” a year ago by the telecoms giant’s biggest commercial rival, BuzzFeed News can reveal.

Lebara, a major competitor in the market for prepaid calling cards used by Europe’s migrant communities, deployed a team of corporate spies to tail Lyca’s bagmen all over London and reported their unorthodox cash movements to the National Crime Agency (NCA).

A major investigation by BuzzFeed News revealed this week that Lyca deploys three men to drive around in unmarked people carriers depositing rucksacks stuffed with hundreds of thousands of pounds twice a day across London. The Conservatives have accepted £1.3m from Lycamobile, and Labour MPs have demanded that the party put a freeze on any further donations from the telecoms giant and consider handing back its money.

The former director of public prosecutions Lord MacDonald QC said the cash desposits caught on film by BuzzFeed News were “deeply suspicious” and demanded an urgent investigation.
 
EU internal border checks to stay in place
[Norwaynews] [09.05.2016, 07:50am, Mon. GMT]
The European Commission on Wednesday (5 May) backed extending internal border checks for six months in Austria, Denmark, Germany, Norway and Sweden.

The Brussels executive says the move is triggered by ongoing border security issues in Greece, which pose a broader threat to the passport-free Schengen zone.

"As long as serious deficiencies in [Greece's] border management persist some internal border control measures should be maintained," said EU commission vice-president Frans Timmermans.

The commission says Greece is still unable to carry out surveillance in the Aegean without the help from others. It also notes Greece doesn't register incoming asylum seekers along its land borders.

Speaking alongside him at a press conference in Brussels, EU migration commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos said the plan was to lift all the internal checks by the end of year.
 
New U.S. Navy testing of Norwegian missile
[Norwaynews] [09.05.2016, 07:47am, Mon. GMT]
The U.S. Navy is issuing a contract to Kongsberg Defense of Norway for missiles and equipment for additional testing of its Naval Strike Missile.

The U.S. Navy plans to issue a contract to Norway's Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace for equipment and missile flight test support services.

The equipment and services are for an additional Foreign Comparative Testing Phase II demonstration of Kongsburg's Naval Strike Missile conducted from a U.S. Littoral Combat Ship.

Kongsberg will supply missiles and ship equipment -- including deck-mounted launchers and command systems -- and installation and integration services for the testing, which is expected to end by the final quarter of FY 2018.
 
Norway head UN environment agency
[Norwaynews] [04.05.2016, 11:25am, Wed. GMT]
Norway's former minister for the environment and international development, Erik Solheim, was appointed on Tuesday to head the UN Environment Programme.

Solheim, 61, worked at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) as head of the development assistance committee.
 
He served as Norway's minister for the environment and international development from 2007 to 2012.

The former minister will replace Achim Steiner who has been executive director of Nairobi-based UNEP for the past ten years.
 
Norway to send 60 soldiers to train Syrians fighting ISIS
[Norwaynews] [03.05.2016, 06:47am, Tue. GMT]
Norway announced Monday that it would deploy 60 soldiers to train Syrians fighting ISIS, boosting its involvement in the international coalition against the extremists.

The soldiers belonging to the Norwegian special forces would conduct the training in Jordan, Prime Minister Erna Solberg said at a press conference in Oslo.

"The brutal acts by IS (ISIS) have cost many civilians their lives and led an even greater number to flee (the country)," Solberg said.

ISIS has also "brought terrorism to Europe and young people are radicalized and recruited in order to have foreign fighters," she added.

The Syrian groups that will be trained by the Norwegian soldiers were not identified, but according to Defense Minister Ine Eriksen SoreidIne Eriksen, they were chosen following a "thorough and systematic" selection process.
 
Child welfare or 'state kidnapping'? Foreign parents face anguish in Norway
[AFP] [03.05.2016, 06:43am, Tue. GMT]
"The children are afraid when there's a knock at the door. They fear they'll be taken away again," says Jaquline tearfully in broken Norwegian, recounting her battles with Norway's child welfare services which have been accused of unduly tearing families apart.

Known as Barnevernet, the agency provides a host of services to parents in need.
But more controversially, it also removes children from their homes, placing them in institutions or foster families due to perceived shortcomings in their care, or if they are subjected to child-rearing methods perceived as violent.

This has led to misunderstandings with ethnic minorities, who often have different cultural codes and are overrepresented in having their children taken away, in a move some have branded "state kidnappings".

In this Scandinavian country of five million people, 1,665 children were removed from their parents' care in 2014, among them 424 with foreign-born mothers, agency figures show.
 
Family pay tribute to 'devoted' British father killed in Norway helicopter crash
[Norwaynews] [01.05.2016, 06:19pm, Sun. GMT]
The family of a British oil worker killed in a helicopter crash in Norway say they have been left "heartbroken" by his death.

Iain Stuart from Aberdeenshire died along with 10 other passengers and two crew when the aircraft travelling from an oil field crashed off the Norwegian coast on Friday.

A statement released by "heartbroken" relatives of the 41-year-old, who worked for oilfield services company Halliburton, said he was devoted husband and father to two children.

"We as a family are devastated at the loss of Iain in Friday's tragic helicopter crash in Norway," the statement said.

"Iain was a loving husband and devoted father to his two children and as a family we are heartbroken. He was a caring son, brother, uncle and friend to many.
 
Norway opens market for Sri Lankan fish exports with the lifting of EU ban
[Norwaynews] [30.04.2016, 07:37pm, Sat. GMT]
The Norwegian government has taken actions to give more Investment opportunities to Sri Lanka in their fish market with the lifting of the ban imposed by the European Union on exports of Sri Lankan fish and fishery products, the Finance Ministry said.

Following a meeting with the Finance Minister, Ravi Karunanayake earlier this week, the Norwegian Ambassador to Sri Lanka Thorbjørn Gaustadsæther has said that with the lifting of the ban Sri Lanka has gained opportunity to invest in fish exports industry in Norway.

The meeting with the Norwegian Ambassador was a follow-up on a meeting the Finance Minister held with his Norwegian counterpart Ms. Siv Jensen in Washington, while participating for Spring Meetings of the IMF and World Bank Group.
 
Norway steps up support for vulnerable groups in humanitarian crises
[Norwaynews] [29.04.2016, 01:30pm, Fri. GMT]
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Børge Brende, says Norway is earmarking NOK 40 million for efforts to help people with disabilities and to combat sexual violence in humanitarian crises. - Certain groups are more vulnerable than others in situations of war and conflict. Norway will intensify its efforts to prevent violence and injury, and to help those who are affected, the Foreign Minister said. 

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is playing a leading role among international organisations, both in the work to combat sexual violence and in efforts to support people with disabilities. The Government is therefore increasing its support for this work by NOK 10 million, to a total of NOK 40 million.  

 
'Several die' in Norway helicopter crash near Bergen
[Norwaynews] [29.04.2016, 01:26pm, Fri. GMT]
Several people have been found dead after a helicopter crashed west of the Norwegian city of Bergen with 13 on board, local media report.

There were initial reports of people in the sea, but a rescue official told broadcaster NRK that there were no signs of any survivors.

The helicopter was "totally destroyed". Photos from the scene show thick smoke coming from an area of rocky islets.

It was flying from the Gullfaks oil field to Bergen.

The western city is a centre for the North Sea oil and gas industry.
 
Norwegian F-16 mistakenly machine-guns control tower with officers inside, military says
[Norwaynews] [24.04.2016, 08:14pm, Sun. GMT]
A Norwegian fighter jet on a training exercise has mistakenly machine-gunned a control tower with three officers inside, who survived unhurt, the military says.

Two F-16s were taking part in a mock attack on the uninhabited island of Tarva off Norway's west coast when one of them opened fire with its M61 Vulcan cannon, which is capable of firing up to 100 rounds a second.

A hail of bullets hit the tower in the incident, which happened on the night of April 12, but the officers inside were not injured.
 
Norwegian fighter jet helps save dying patient
[Norwaynews] [22.04.2016, 02:19pm, Fri. GMT]
Quick-thinking medical staff in Norway saved a patient’s life by calling in a fighter jet to whisk live-saving medical equipment from another hospital.

The dying patient urgently needed a special lung and heart procedure called extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, but the hospital in the town of Bodø in central Norway had neither the equipment nor the skills to carry it out.

However, a hospital in Trondheim, about 280 miles (450km) south, did have a machine available, and staff contacted the air force on 4 April for help in transporting the equipment. The request reportedly came just as two F-16 fighter jets were preparing to take off from an airbase nearby.
 
Norwegian Tourists Find Macedonian Culture Very Attractive
[Norwaynews] [20.04.2016, 10:28am, Wed. GMT]
Prominent names in the tourism industry in Norway, this weekend visited Macedonia and met with the representatives of 30 companies from the private sector. As the Agency for Promotion and Support of Tourism stated, the tourist offer of Skopje and Ohrid and their historical and cultural heritage were the most impressive for the Norwegian tour operators. They consider that Macedonia has a huge potential at the Norwegian market, mostly with the lakes, the culture, the rural, active, wine and gastro tourism.
 
Tanzania: Norway Pledges Continued Support
[Norwaynews] [19.04.2016, 01:07pm, Tue. GMT]
The Government of Norwegian will continue to support local content development in the wake of huge natural gas discoveries in the country. Speaking at the weekend during an entrepreneurship award winners' event known as "Heroes of Tomorrow", the Norwegian Ambassador to Tanzania, Hanna-Marie Kaastad said the award programme, which has the support of her government, was intended to improve entrepreneurship among Tanzania's young entrepreneurs so they can participate in the projected related to natural gas undertakings.
 
Centrica unloads Norwegian assets
[Norwaynews] [18.04.2016, 05:58pm, Mon. GMT]
A Norwegian subsidiary of British energy company Centrica said it unloaded some of its assets in Norwegian waters following a portfolio review. Retroactive to Jan. 1, Centrica E&P Norway transferred its 30 percent working interest in three license areas over to regional counterpart Det norske.
 
US airline pilots union cries bloody murder over Norwegian Air deal
[Norwaynews] [18.04.2016, 10:34am, Mon. GMT]
The Allied Pilots Association, certified collective bargaining agent for the 15,000 pilots of American Airlines, expressed strong opposition to the Department of Transportation’s decision to grant tentative approval to Norwegian Air International’s application for a foreign air carrier permit.
 
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