Newsletter The New Nordic Region?

From the Nordic summit in Stockholm on May 13th. PMs Ulf Kristersson from Sweden, Mette Frederiksen from Denmark, Jonas Gahr Støre from Norway, Petteri Orpo from Finland, and Bjarni Benediktsson from Iceland. (Photo: Ninni Andersson/the Swedish Government Offices)

Dear reader. Norway is closing its border with Russia, and Russia is reacting. Commentator Arne O. Holm addresses the new Nordic region, while Finland wants to develop its infrastructure. And we have a farewell interview with a true High North pioneer. Here is the week as seen from the North.

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In an interview with High North News last week, Norwegian MFA Espen Barth Eide (Labor) was bursting with excitement over the possibilities that arise after Sweden and Finland joined NATO.

"Due to Sweden and Finland's accession to NATO, the Nordic region now looks like a new, possible Arctic power package," writes Commentator Arne O. Holm in this week's commentary. 

Norway is imposing further restrictions on its border with Russia, and from May 29th, Russian citizens will be denied entry to Norway if they travel for tourist visits or other non-essential purposes. 

The Russian embassy reacts and thinks the decision is discrimination ordinary Russian's interests. 

The Finnish railway does not meet NATO's standards, so Finland's Minister of Transport and Communications will explore opportunities to upgrade the country's track gauge to the European standard. 

Journalist Astri Edvardsen has met the Chief of the Norwegian Army, who notes that the majority of Sweden and Finland's army forces are localized in the south, while the bulk of Norway's land forces are in the north. (Norwegian only) 

Journalist Hilde-Gunn Bye has talked to the man considered a pioneer in High North cooperation. (Norwegian only) 

Frode Mellemvik (70) will soon step down as the director of the High North Center after 17 years, and the center is now looking for a new leader.

Finally, you can read about the Norwegian polar bears' need for more protection, according to the Norwegian government. 

Read about this and more at High North News. 

Follow us next week as the international Arctic Congress kicks off in Bodø. 

Wishing you all the best for the upcoming week on behalf of the editorial staff,

Trine Jonassen