An ambiguity has surfaced over Norwegian prime minister’s statements on Kashmir. Prime Minister Erna Solberg is currently visiting India and she was speaking to media on Tuesday. A segment of media reported that Prime Minister offered mediation to resolve the longstanding Kashmir conflict between India and Pakistan. The reports said that in an interview with NDTV, she urged Pakistan and India to enter into dialogue to resolve the Kashmir dispute as it was not possible to settle the issue militarily.
However, there was an equal level of denial of such reports which said that the Norwegian prime minister did not offer to mediate between India and Pakistan and it was erroneously reported. The reports further said that Norway had neither been asked nor offered to mediate.
Norway, despite its position as one of the richest countries in the world, has a reputation as a peace-loving nation. Erna Solberg-the Norwegian Prime Minister is also leader of the Conservative Party since May 2004.
Earlier media reports said that the Prime Minister of Norway She said there is need to have good trust between the partners in any region where there is a conflict. Referring to last year`s visit of former Norwegian Prime Minister, Kjell Magne Bondevik to Jammu and Kashmir, Ms. Solberg said we have learned that on Kashmir issue popular support needs to be brought-in by getting women and youth into the peace process and ensuring solid peace in the area.
Replying to a question about mediation by Norwegian Government for resolution of Kashmir dispute, she said if Pakistan and India show interest then Norway can offer such mechanisms it has been offering in other regions for resolving such disputes. She said both countries should decrease their military spending and work more to boost development in other sectors like health and education.
Meanwhile, the Chairman of Hurriyat forum, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, has welcomed the statement of Norwegian Prime Minister, Erna Solberg, in which she stated that her country is willing to mediate on the Kashmir dispute between Pakistan and India.
Norway has a rich history of pioneering some of the most successful conflict resolution mechanisms in the world.