Democratic Republic of the Congo–Norway relations

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Congoan-Norwegian relations
Map indicating locations of Norway and Democratic Republic of the Congo

Norway

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Democratic Republic of the Congo – Norway relations refer to the bilateral relations between Democratic Republic of the Congo and Norway. The Democratic Republic of the Congo is represented by a non resident embassy in London. There are 1,930 DR Congolese people living in Norway.[1] The Ministry of Foreign Affairs discourages people to travel to the northern and eastern parts of the country.[2]

History[edit]

The Congo became independent from Belgium on June 30, 1960. Norway had begun humanitarian aid to the Congo since at least 1963.[3]

In 1963 Norway was one of only six nations that Congo approached with a request for military aid, asking for help to build a navy. Norway declined the request, citing a shortage of the training expertise Congo was looking for.[4][5]

Norway gave the Congo NOK 40 million (US $15.7[citation needed] million) in 2003. Vidar Helgesen, the Norwegian Secretary of State said: "In spite of some hopeful signs in the peace process and the establishment of a transitional government in the capital, Kinshasa, the humanitarian situation in the eastern part of the country is precarious."[6] In 2004 all previous debt was forgiven.[7] In 2007 the Secretary Generals of the 5 largest Norwegian humanitarian organizations visited the Condo to access the crisis.[8] In 2008 an additional NOK 15 million were suppled.[9]

In 2009 Minister of Defence Anne-Grete Strøm-Erichsen visited the Congo to observe the conflict. She agreed to send troops to supply manpower to the United Nations peace-keeping forces during the Kivu conflict.[10]

The republic's debt to Norway, 143 million Norwegian kroner, has been erased as a result of a decision by Norway's Cabinet on October 21, 2011.[11]

Joshua French and Tjostolv Moland[edit]

In 2009, Norwegian nationals Joshua French and Tjostolv Moland were arrested and charged in the killing of their hired driver, attempted murder of a witness, espionage, armed robbery and the possession of illegal firearms. They were found guilty and sentenced to death, and also fined—along with Norway—$60 million.

Jonas Gahr Støre, Norway's Foreign Minister said: "I strongly react to the death sentence of the two Norwegians ... Norway is a principled opponent of the death penalty and I will contact the DRC's foreign minister to convey this." According to Bloomberg.com "Norway also object[ed] to the espionage conviction and the inclusion of the country in the fine, Stoere [sic] said. 'Norway isn’t a part of this case.'"[12]

A letter dated March[13] 2012 was "delivered in Kinshasa from prime minister Stoltenberg to president Kabila".[14] It has not been answered as of August 2013.[15]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Persons with immigrant background by immigration category, country background and sex". Statistics Norway. Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  2. ^ "Dit du ikke bør reise". Bergens Tidende (in Norwegian). 2009-12-25. Retrieved 2010-05-18. (noting that Norway's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has advised against travel to the northern and eastern parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo)
  3. ^ "Norway Offers Aid to Congo". New York Times. February 15, 1963. Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  4. ^ Lukas, J. Anthony (March 15, 1963). "Congo Asks Six Nations To Help Retrain Forces". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-18. ... 
  5. ^ "Norse Refuse to Help Congo Build a Navy". Associated Press. November 27, 1963. Retrieved 2010-05-18. [Norway] will inform the Congo it is unable to meet a request for help in building a Congolese navy, a spokesman for the defense ministry said today. ... 
  6. ^ "Norway Gives US $15.7 Million in Humanitarian Aid". AllAfrica.com. October 24, 2003. Retrieved 2010-05-18. Norway has given the Democratic Republic of the Congo 40 million kroner (US $15.7 million) for emergency relief measures 
  7. ^ "Norway forgives debt from Congo". Associated Press. May 28, 2004. Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  8. ^ "Congo crisis". Norwegian Red Cross at Reuters. October 26, 2007. Retrieved 2010-05-18. The Secretary Generals of the 5 largest humanitarian organizations in Norway recently visited The Democratic Republic of Congo to raise awareness of the detriorating humanitarian situation. 
  9. ^ "Norway Increases Emergency Relief to DR Congo by NOK 15 Million". Norway Mission to the United Nations. November 11, 2008. Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  10. ^ "Norwegian forces will be sent to Congo". Norway Post. January 19, 2009. Retrieved 2010-05-18. Defence Minister Anne-Grete Stroem-Erichsen has announced that Norway will supply manpower to the UN-led peace-keeping forces in the West African state of Congo, torn by civil war. 
  11. ^ http://www.vg.no/nyheter/innenriks/artikkel.php?artid=10022815
  12. ^ "Norway to Contact Congo, Nationals Get Death Sentence". Bloomberg. September 8, 2009. Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  13. ^ "- Nå er det enda viktigere å få French hjem". Aftenposten. 2013-08-19. p. 7. 
  14. ^ Stoltenberg venter på svar om Moland og French
  15. ^ Eide: - Vi har aldri opplevd noe lignende