African Press International (API)

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United States of America’s pressure makes Norway change their mind! Now Norway says the country ‘does NOT want to talk with Osama bin Laden’

Posted by African Press International on August 29, 2008

Norway’s plans to to with Osama bin Laden has been shattered by the USA who has pressurerised the country forcing it to abandon the plan to enter into negotiations. A suvereign country is expected to do things independently and yet Norway allows herself to be pushed around by the US on matters of policy.
Norway should not pretend that the media misquoted their intentions. It is only because they have realised that the big nations are not ready to dance to a tune started by a small nation in the world, a nation that wants to do everything for the sake of being noticed as part and parcel of the international players in top politics. You do not fight big ball when you are a tiny nation.
Norway’s deputy foreign minister now says that Norway has no desire for a dialogue with either Osama bin Laden or the terror network he leads, al-Qaida. The foreign ministry sent out a clarification of remarks Johansen made on Wednesday, indicating he’d been misunderstood.

Raymond Johansen, a state secretary in Norway’s ministry and a deputy foreign minister, had some explaining to do on Thursday.

PHOTO: CARL MARTIN NORDBY

Norway, officials now say, has no desire for a dialogue with Osama bin Laden.

PHOTO: MAZHAR ALI / AP

Raymond Johansen confirmed Thursday that he told Oslo newspaper Dagsavisen on Wednesday that “you dont make peace with your friends but with your enemies.” At the same time, Johansen claimed that he had “no illusions” that bin Laden would sit down at any negotiating table.

Johansen and officials in the Foreign Ministry now state in a press release that Johansen’s remarks don’t mean Norway wants to talk with bin Laden or al-Qaida. Johansen suggests news bureau NTB misunderstood his remarks, adding that NTB’s interpretation that Norway wants a dialogue with bin Laden — widely reported in Norwegian media Wednesday and Thursday — paints an erroneous picture of Norwegian foreign policy.

“There are several criteria that would need to be in place before we involve ourselves in dialogue with partners to a conflict,” Johansen said in a statement on Thursday. “A central criterion is that the partners themselves want such a dialogue. I pinpointed to Dagsavisen that I didn’t think Osama bin Laden and … al-Qaida want any dialogue. It’s therefore wrong to say that Norway has a desire for dialogue with bin Laden.”

The Swiss foreign office has also sent out a clarification of remarks made by its leader, Micheline Calmy-Rey. She had also reportedly urged dialogue with Osama bin Laden, but Swiss officials now say that’s not correct.

“In her speech to … ambassadors, the head of the FDFA (Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs) spoke of dialogue as an instrument of foreign policy,” reads a statement from the Swiss ministry. “She mentioned the appropriateness of such dialogue and the limits in which it should take place.

“In this context, she asked the rhetorical question of whether entering into a dialogue with bin Laden could be considered as a possibility. She did not state that she would promote such a dialogue, nor has she proposed such a dialogue.

“To put an end to this controversy once and for all, in practice there is no question of the FDFA proposing a dialogue with Osama Bin Laden,” concluded the Swiss clarification.

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API/Source.aftenposteneng

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