Norway’s ambassador: Palestinian appeal to UN legitimate in lieu of treaty with Israel


Svein Sevje hopes conflict can be resolved in the spirit of Oslo Accords; says Norway still supports Israel.

Norway’s ambassador to Israel told Haaretz Wednesday that in lieu of a negotiated peace treaty between Israel and the Palestinians, it is legitimate for the Palestinians to appeal to the United Nations, but that his country supports Israel, and has always supported it.

The Oslo Accords between Israel and the PLO were struck in Norway between 1993 and 1995, and are the legal framework for the relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority in matters including security, economy and infrastructure.

“The history of Norway vis-a-vis Israel is one of great support — all the time: from the inception, through all these years, a lot of support,” Norwegian Ambassador Svein Sevje told Haaretz on Wednesday, hours before boarding a flight back to Oslo.

Norway is currently reeling from the shock of twin terror attacks carried out last Friday, in which a government building was bombed and 76 people are known to have been killed. The self-confessed killer is said to have published a manifesto decrying Muslim immigration to Norway and advocating for their expulsion from the country.

The manifesto of the alleged killer also contains references to Israel, saying that it is on the front lines of a clash of civilizations between Judeo-Christianity and Islam.

Most Norwegian people believe that Israel’s 44-year military occupation of the West Bank and the Jewish-only settlements built on that land are violations of international law and an impediment to peace, says Sevje. He hopes that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be resolved diplomatically, in the spirit of the Oslo accords.

“That’s why a few weeks back, our foreign minister said we would like to see negotiations. But if the Palestinians go to the UN, we consider that legitimate. It can’t be unilateralism to go to the most multilateral of all organizations,” he says, disagreeing with the government’s contention that such a move would sabotage the possibilities for peace in the region.

If the Norwegian government does not believe a Palestinian push for international recognition of its sovereignty to be illegitimate, or likely to lead to increased conflict, it may be partly because of Norway’s historic decision to dissolve its own national union with Sweden, just over a century ago, in 1905. “It happened without violence — it was a unilateral declaration of independence, and the Swedes accepted it,” says Sevje.

  1. #1 by Ingrid B. on July 30, 2011 - 7:14 pm

    The Oslo accord was shameful.. just as shameful as the UN partition of Palestine in 48.. it`s time Norway put things right..

  2. #2 by Fredrik on July 30, 2011 - 11:33 pm

    In his own defense for killing innocent people Anders Behring Breivik wrote:

    ”So let us fight together with Israel, with our Zionist brothers against all anti-Zionists, against all cultural Marxists/multiculturalists.”

    This isn’t the first time innocent people are viciously killed by Ziomist loving maggots.

  3. #3 by Llyn Kidner-Williams on July 31, 2011 - 3:13 am

    It is time for the entire world to put things right as far as Palestine is concerned and that means a Sovereign State for The Palestinian People that is uninterupted and that Israel has no say in or air, sea, or land concessions over. The Palestinian People should have the freedom to chose it’s own government, irrespective of what Israel or anyone else wants just as Israelis have the freedom to chose what they want in their own State irrespective of what The Palestinian People and Government want. Israel has and should now retreat to it’s May 1, 1948 borders and stay within them and shop inciting hatred towards Muslims within and without Israel; should begin attempting to living in peace with it’s neighbours instead of constantly trying to attack them physically and by libelling them as they constantly have. Israeli Jews chose to come to the Middle East; they were not invited to come here so as the outsiders and latecomers; surely they realize it is up to them to attempt to fit in. Before some bright zionist points out that Jews were here two thousand years ago, I will point out that Palestiniand (Canaanites) were here before you were even a religion and before Abram and Sarai his common-law wife arrived in Canaan for the first time so there is no way that you were here first and you were never more than a religion in any way, shape or form. Never a race, a people; just a religion and you certainly were not a European – based religion. So it is up to you to try to fit in or leave now.

  4. #4 by C (Belgium) on July 31, 2011 - 9:06 am

    How come the Norwegian ambassador says this so short after the massacre by Behring?

    Its always about the timing…….

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