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newsofNorway / 5·03newsIn Brief...New oilNorwegian oil producer Statoil hasmade what appears to be the first majorstrike of oil in the North Sea in ten years.A possible enormous strike of oil wasmade in the Ellida field outsideTrondheim in August, and Statoil is nowconducting further tests to see if thenews is indeed as good as it appears tobe.Celebration at seaPrime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevikand Foreign Minister Jan Petersen wereamong the many distinguished guestswhen the Norwegian Seamen’s Churchin New York celebrated its 125 thanniversary at a festive dinner cruise onthe Hudson River on September 20th.“Many people in Norway have a distantrelationship to the church,” Bondeviksaid at the cruise, “but when they travelabroad, a lot of them establish a closerelationship with the Seamen’s Church.”New Internet portalThe Internet image of Norway is aboutto change. By June 2004, every one ofNorway’s Foreign Service missions willhave a new website. Her Majesty QueenSonja launched the first of 85 newInternet portals in São Paulo on October8th during a state visit to Brazil. Thehomepage of the Royal NorwegianEmbassy in Washington, D.C. will also be includedin the Norway Portal.Lindh murder shockNorwegian Prime Minister Kjell MagneBondevik was deeply shocked to learnabout the brutal murder of SwedishForeign Minister Anna Lindh. “This isan attack on open societies,” Bondeviksaid. Lindh was shopping with a friendon September 10 when she was brutallyattacked and stabbed several times. Shedied following several hours of surgery.Interesting cutSvein Gjedrem, Norway’s Central Bankgovernor, has yet again reduced thenational interest rate. The current rate isnow 2.5 percent, the lowest rateNorwegians have seen since the 1950s.The cut seems, however, to be the lastone for now because the Central Bankbelieves the interest rate has been stabilizedat the wanted level.Front page: Vikings are part of the traditional imageof Norway - an image that has been the subject ofmuch public debate during recent months. Read thestory on pages six and seven for an introduction tothis debate. PHOTO: SCANPIXNorwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiesel sat at the end of the tablewhen almost 20 heads of state participated in a debate on terrorism. PHOTO: RICHARD DREW/APRooting out terrorismNearly 20 heads of state joined hostsNorwegian Prime Minister Kjell MagneBondevik and Nobel Peace Prize LaureateElie Wiesel at a conference in New York onSeptember 22 to discuss the fight againstterrorism. “We shall prevail,” Bondevikassured his distinguished audience.Each year, as the U.N. General Assemblyopens at its headquarters in New York, thecity experiences a mass invasion of heads ofstate and other high-ranking officials. Oneday before the Assembly opened for the 58thtime, Mr. Bondevik and Professor Wieselinvited world leaders to attend a discussionon the roots of terrorism and how best tofight it.“It is important for the fight against terrorthat we are able to have these discussions,”the Prime Minister told News of Norway.“People will have many different opinionsduring such discussions. I think Norway canplay an important role as a bridge-builder,” headded.“We are a small country with no ambitionsof becoming big and powerful. We have quitea bit of experience when it comes to conflictresolution, and I think we have obtained quitea bit of trust among other world leaders,” hesaid.Among the leaders who accepted the invitationto the conference were French PrimeMinister Jacques Chirac, Spanish PrimeMinister José Maria Aznar, PakistaniPresident Pervez Musharraf and AfghaniPresident Hamid Karzai.United Nations Secretary-General KofiAnnan opened the conference only a fewhours after the second attack on the U.N.building in Baghdad.“If we are to fight terrorism effectively,”he said, “we need more debate and not less.We must use our heads, not our hearts, whendealing with this threat.”During his opening remarks, Mr.Bondevik, who chaired the conference togetherwith Professor Wiesel, emphasized thatalthough much had been done to prevent furtherterrorist acts, there was still a long way togo.“The victims of terror as well as futuregenerations deserve nothing less than ourtotal commitment in fighting terrorism,” hesaid, and offered three suggestions to effortsthat could be made by world leaders: teachingtolerance, not hate, to children; making surethat religious leaders are guided by compassionand respect; and making sure that governmentssatisfy the needs and rights of theircitizens.French President Jacques Chirac, notingthat exactly ten years had passed since thesigning of the Oslo agreement, focused especiallyon the Middle East in his speech.“Once the cradle of great cultures and gloriouscivilizations,” he said, “today it isuncertain of its pace and role. Domestic andinternational crises are having a profoundlyunsettling impact on its populations. We muststand by these peoples,” he said.Nobel Peace Prize laureate Professor ElieWiesel said that his “built-in warning system”was telling him that humanity is in danger.“Today, every city can become the frontline, every street a battlefield, every person acorpse,” he noted, although he did end hisspeech on a positive note.Quoting “that great writer AndreMalraux,” Wiesel noted that ““Victorybelongs to those who made war without lovingit.” I don’t love the war on terrorism, butI’m willing to fight it. Our children’s futuresare at stake.”2

Game over for NorwayA goal by Abby Wambach in the 25thminute was enough for the Americanteam in the soccer World Cup for womento advance from the quarterfinals.Norway’s national team had to watch therest of the tournament as spectators.“We would have loved to participate inthe rest of the cup, and I really felt that Ihad trained the girls to their maximum,”coach Åge Steen told Norwegian newspaperVG after the game.“We fought well, but I’ve never beforeseen the American team so well organizeddefensively,” he continued.Although he was disappointed by theend result, he was happy with his team.“They really fought out there, but wejust weren’t good enough. We can’t performmagic tricks,” he said.The defeat could have been twice as bighad it not been for a fantastic save byNorway’s goalie Bente Nordby. The Americanteam was given a penalty kick in the secondhalf, but Nordby somehow managed to saveMia Hamm’s powerful strike.The Norwegian team played three gamesin the World Cup before the quarterfinalsagainst the defending champions. The openingmatch against France on September 20 gave aflying start for the Norwegians when theyscored twice without any retaliation.Dagny Mellgren, who was voted the bestplayer of that game by FIFA officials, was alsohappy with the performance.“This gave us the confidence we needed.We managed to keep our composure when theother team put on a lot of pressure, and we hadnews newsofNorway / 5·03Norway's Solveig Gulbrandsen (left) was one head higher thanher French counterpart at the World Cup's opening match onSeptember 20.a goalie that was just fantastic. We couldn’thave gotten a better start,” she told News ofNorway.The game against Brazil four days later putMellgren and the other players right back onthe ground when the Norwegians lost 4-1. Inthe last game of the group stages Norwayimpressed with a decisive 7-1 victory overSouth Korea.The six points from three games was notenough to top Group B, however, and theNorwegians therefore had to face the winnersof Group A: The USA. The Americans wenton to win the bronze medal, while Germanycould call themselves World Champions onOctober 12 after defeating Sweden 2 – 1.Towards bilateral researchIn spite of the long and rich traditions forco-operation between the U.S. and Norwayin the fields of education and research, nobilateral agreement on research currentlyexists between the two governments.Minister of Education and ResearchKristin Clemet wants to do somethingabout that.In recent meetings with representativesfrom the White House and the U.S.Department of State, Ms. Clemet made an initialattempt to change this, by expressingNorway’s interest in negotiating a bilateralumbrella agreement in the area of science andtechnology.“The United States is without comparisonthe most important single country for bilateralcontacts in my area of responsibility,” shesaid.“In view of recent developments, there is aneed to revitalize and give renewed strength toour relations with North American researchand higher education.”Clemet visited Washington, D.C. thismonth to attend the October 6 TransatlanticUniversity Summit, hosted by the NorwegianResearch & Technology Forum in the U.S.and Canada, under the auspices of the RoyalNorwegian Embassy.The summit gathered leading specialistsfrom nationally and internationally recognizedNorwegian, American and Canadian researchinstitutions, industry and government.“As a key element in Norway’s attempt tostrengthen and revitalize relations with NorthAmerica in the fields of research and education,my ministry is putting an increasedemphasis on bilateral cooperation betweenNorway and the U.S., and increasing its fundingfor this purpose through the ResearchCouncil of Norway,” Ms. Clemet said in heraddress to the summit.“If the U.S. State Department is positive tothe proposed bilateral agreement on researchcooperation, we intend to work systematicallywith our American counterparts to makethe agreement a useful instrument for fosteringstronger relationships, and as a basis forexchanges and networks,” she continued,adding that the U.S. government’s initialresponse to the initiative had been very positive.In Brief...Protecting SvalbardThe Norwegian Government has establishedfive new protected areas on theArctic archipelago of Svalbard. The newprotected areas cover a total area of4.449 square kilometres, or 8 percent ofSvalbard’s land area. This is the mostextensive establishment of protectedareas in Norway since 1973, when theoriginal five large protected areas ofSvalbard were established. Although theoriginal protected areas already cover 57percent of Svalbard, they do not includethe most biologically important tundraareas of the archipelago.Price war in for landingAs the Oslo airport of Gardermoen wascelebrating its fifth anniversary this fall,a price war on flight tickets was reallyheating up. Newcomer Nordic Airlinkannounced one-way fares between Osloand Stockholm at NOK 249 (USD 36),well below the lowest fares currentlyoffered by SAS, the main contender onthe market. A spokesperson from SASsaid that the airliner took the competitionseriously, but that SAS could offercustomers more than the newcomer.Dear salmonSalmon prices are picking up again aftera long period of stagnation and downwardmarket trends. In early October,the average export price for Norwegiansalmon hit NOK 22.21 per kilogram(USD 3.17). The prices hit bottom inJuly, when an average kilogram ofsalmon was exported at a price of justNOK 17.46 (USD 2.49)Observing LofotenThe British newspaper The Observer hasfallen in love with Norway’s Lofotenislands. Hailing them as the second mostbeautiful islands in the world, the paperwrites that “their purple mountains andgreen meadows, bright fishing boats andrust-red cottages on stilts are mirrored inthe Caribbean-blue sea.”Keep the passportSome time ago U.S. authorities decidedthat people from a number of countriestraveling to the USA for general businessor tourist purposes would berequired to have either a visa or amachine-readable passport as ofOctober 1, 2003. This date has beenmoved forward to October 26, 2004.People traveling to the USA after thisdate will have to have a visa or amachine-readable passport.3

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