No fear for Russia
Norwegian foreign minister Jonas Gahr Støre sees nothing problematic or fearful in the increased Russian military activity in the north, reports the Barents Observer.
The Russian military is now spending 10 billion EUR on improvements. The Norwegian government will of course monitor the Russian military efforts closely, but Støre cannot see that this in any way changes the good relations between Norway and Russia. Because of the 15 years of close cooperation between the neighboring countries, Støre see no military threat in the east like during the cold war period.
The Foreign Minister does question the enormous increase in Russia’s military spending. However, this does not in any way push forward a need for increasing Norwegian military spending, says Støre to NRK.
The Norwegian Government has been criticized by the opposition for cutting military budgets. In Støre’s opninon the current government has contributed to reorganize the Norwegian armed forces into a modern structure. He says Norway has Europe’s most modern navy, and he also mentions that Norway has signed a contract on new fighter jets.