Norway´s Government has offended the people of former Soviet Union deeply, and this must be corrected.
Today, it is an honor for me as the Chairman of Kristen Koalisjon Norge (KKN) to celebrate the Day of Russia (officially June 12th) in a reception at the Russian Embassy, upon the invitation of His Excellency Ambassador Teymuraz Ramishvili.
At the reception I will express to the Ambassador, who is Mr. Putin´s envoy to Norway, the deep sense of gratitude and respect that KKN has for the invaluable contribution that Russia (and the former Soviet Union) made for the liberation of Norway from nazism in 1944.
It was the soldiers of Soviet Union who liberated Eastern Finnmark in 1944, and they immediately gave over the territory to the Norwegians.
12.678 Soviet soldiers are burried in Norway, The Soviet Union lost 27 million people and liberated 11 European nations from nazism.
During the Norwegian celebration of the Liberation Day at Jørstadmoen Military Base on May 8th - where 954 Soviet soldiers lie buried - Justice Minister Jøran Kallmyr (Progress Party Frp) talked about «freedom against socialism». This happened in a paragraph when he spoke about the establishment of NATO after the Second World War.
«NATO was established in the shadows of the growing threat from the communist regime in the East. The Cold War was characterized by ideological contrasts. democracy vs. dictatorship. Freedom against communism and socialism. But also by the threat of the atomic bomb. For Norway it was very close because we had the Bear as our neighbour.»
Not one single word was spoken by Prime Minister Erna Solberg´s Justice Minister to honor the 954 Soviet soldiers who lied buried - literally by his feet. Instead he disrespected and dishonored them and the great people of Russia.
Tomorrow is five weeks since this show of disrespect from Mr. Kallmyr. There have been no statements from the Norwegian Prime Minister, the Foreign Ministry, nor the Justice Department.
It does not help that the Justice Department is known for the string of mistakes that been committed by its Ministers since Mrs. Solberg became Prime Minister in 2013. Mr. Kallmyr is Norway´s sixth Justice Minister in six years.
But a sincere apology should be possible, eh?
I believe that it was God´s providence and favor that led me into a relationship of honor with His Excellency Ambassador Teymuraz Ramishvili on December 2nd, 2016 - exactly one day after KKN was reestablished after some years of dormancy.
I have fully learned to appreciate the Russian-Norwegian common historic heritage and our present day similarities. Russia and Norway need each other, just like we need USA, the nations of Europe etc.
The celebration of the 75th anniversary of the liberation of East Finnmark on October 25th, 2019 will be the ideal occasion for our government to start celebrating together with Russia our VICTORY TOGETHER OVER NAZISM.
I plan to be there on October 25th.