“The Russian invasion of Ukraine has changed the European security situation. This crisis is foundational, lasting and requires us to strengthen our Defense here at home too”, says Norwegian Defense Minister Odd Roger Enoksen (Center Party).
At the meeting, the defense ministers discussed how the allied countries are to manage the situation in the shorter as well as longer term.
They agreed to as NATO’s Chief of Command in Europe, the Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) to look into how the alliance should further strengthen its collective defense. The military part of the alliance will revert with advice on how to best do this by the summit in June.
“The government is constantly evaluating how Norway should contribute in the ongoing crisis. Norway is a flank country within NATO. We contribute every day through having and understanding of the situation, preparedness, as well as activities in our immediate areas. We also contribute to Ukraine with weapons and protection equipment and will contribute with NOK 2 billion in humanitarian aid. We are following the EU’s line of sanctions against Russia. And not least; we host the Cold Response 2022 exercise, which is currently taking place and having broad allied as well as Nordic participation. This is an exercise demonstrating strength and unity in the alliance”, Odd Roger Enoksen says in a press release.
Norway is also cooperating closely with its Nordic partners. Sweden and Finland recently participated in parts of the NATO meeting along with the defense ministers from Ukraine and Georgia, as well as EU representatives.
“As Chair of the NORDEFCO Nordic defense cooperation, Norway has initiated running dialogue and coordination with Sweden and Finland about this crisis”, Enoksen says in closing.
The defense cooperation also includes Iceland and Denmark.
This article was originally published in Norwegian and has been translated by HNN's Elisabeth Bergquist.