Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, on Sunday afternoon met with Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem.
Søreide, 43, is the Norwegian woman to serve as Minister of Foreign Affairs. She took the job in 2017, when she was Defense Minister. A member of the Conservative Party, she was elected in 2005 as a member of the Storting, Norway’s supreme legislature.
Back in the summer of 2018, Netanyahu rebuked FM Søreide for overtly funding anti-Israeli activity. The Oslo-based Norwegian Refugee Council, one of the largest and best-known nonprofit humanitarian organizations in the world, initiated a large number of petitions to Israel’s High Court of Justice against the Israeli government – something the NGO never practices in the remaining 30 countries where it operates.
NGO Monitor quotes an unnamed lawyer affiliated with the NRC as saying that the group’s overt objective is to “try every possible legal measure to disrupt the Israeli judicial system. … As many cases as possible are registered and as many cases as possible are appealed to increase the workload of the courts and the High Court to such an extent that there will be a blockage.”
Mind you, Norway is governed by the conservatives…
Last week, Minister Søreide made headlines when she announced that Norwegian citizens who traveled to the Middle East to fight for the Islamic State (ISIS) should not expect to be brought home at the taxpayer’s expense. They’d have to seek consular assistance wherever they may be.
Søreide agreed that the situation was difficult, especially when it came to children who were born into ISIS families and are now suffering through the defeat of the “caliphate.”
“The return of foreign fighters and their children is a demanding question,” Søreide said. “The situation for Norwegian children is worrisome, but this is an issue where there unfortunately aren’t any simple solutions.”
There are believed to be around 30 Norwegian citizens, including 10 women currently in ISIS war zones in Syria and Iraq, according to NewsInEnglish.no, some of whom may be dead. In addition, there are an estimated 40 children with ties to Norway who either were born in ISIS enclaves or taken there by their parents. As many as 100 people with ties to Norway are believed to have traveled to ISIS-controlled area since 2012.