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Norway must do more for Ukraine now!

Norway must do more for Ukraine now!

One suggestion: The framework of the Nansen program should be expanded.

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The second anniversary of the Russian attack on Kiev has passed, and politicians from all parties have expressed their support for Ukraine.

Words that are obligatory

in Facebook Written by Erna Solberg That “Ukrainians are fighting a battle on behalf of all of us who live in open, free and democratic countries.”

In Dagsavisen, Asmund Okrost, the Labor Party's foreign policy spokesman, wrote: “The Ukrainians are also fighting for us. Precisely for this reason, it is important that we on our continent contribute more to supporting the Ukrainian defense struggle.”

In Aftenposten, Jonas Jahr Sture agreed that “it is about Norway’s security,” and added that we also have a “responsibility and obligation to contribute to reducing the suffering and agony of others where we can make a difference.”

These are words that connect us, so why don't we do more? Why did the Parliament and the government not celebrate the second anniversary by significantly increasing financial and material support to Ukraine?

Four specific proposals

Here are four specific suggestions for what to do:

  • Show Russia that support for Ukraine will continue, increase the amounts and extend the framework of the Nansen program from five to 15 years, for example. Five years is not a long time. Norway had soldiers in the Balkans for 13 years (1992-2005), and we were in Afghanistan for 20 years (2001-2021).
  • Giving Ukraine access to the most advanced military and civilian technology. For example, the Norwegian maritime industry probably has underwater robots and many other things that Ukrainian defense can use in new creative ways.
  • Do what the Netherlands has announced it will do: buy artillery ammunition from third countries for delivery to Ukraine.
  • Providing government support for the best new volunteer organizations. Those who have established direct contact with departments on the Ukrainian front line, and who are trying to bridge the equipment gap between what Ukrainian soldiers in their departments receive and Western arms aid. An example of this is the Ukraine Veterans Assistance Organization, which ensured that large quantities of drones, clothing, health equipment and other items donated by Norwegian veterans were sent to Ukraine. Another example is FRET Ukraine, with right-wing politician Peter Froehlich as a leading figure, which provided similar assistance, i.e. direct assistance to Ukrainian soldiers that traditional aid organizations do not provide.
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Dangerous for all of us

The gap between kind words about Ukraine in newspaper columns and the absence of new initiatives and more comprehensive support on the ground will be interpreted by Russian President Vladimir Putin as weakness.

It is dangerous for all of us.