– Should not come at the expense of domestic Navy activities

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Rødt wants to know if the KNM frigate Fridtjof Nansen will operate in areas where US and Western warships may be perceived as threatening.

The Norwegian frigate KNM Fridtjof Nansen is currently in the United States, where the ship is training with an American naval group, which includes the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman.

The frigate has been in the United States since September and is participating in the Cooperative Deployment program. After a few months of coordination in the Atlantic Ocean outside the United States, KNM Fridtjof Nansen will participate in operations with the fleet group for four months.

HANGARSKIP: USS Harry S. Truman during exercise Trident Juncture 2018.

Storting representative and party leader in Rødt Bjørnar Moxnes is concerned about the areas the frigate might end up sailing through with the US naval group, and sent a written question to Minister of Defense Odd Roger Enoksen (Spain).

Moxnes wants to know “how the absence of the KNM frigate Fridtjof Nansen is compensated for maintaining proper patrols of Norway’s coasts and sea areas”, and whether the government can “guarantee that the Norwegian frigate will not sail in the Barents Sea near the Kola Peninsula, the South China Sea, and/or other areas where U.S. and Western warships may be perceived as threatening”.

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Enoksen responds that participation will not come at the expense of national Navy activities, including maintenance, education and presence in Norwegian waters and our immediate areas.

US COMMAND: Crew aboard the KNM Fritdjof Nansen in the USA.

US COMMAND: Crew aboard the KNM Fritdjof Nansen in the USA.

The Minister of Defense further writes in his reply that Norway may reserve against the participation of the frigate in operations contrary to the interests of Norway.

“It is part of the collaboration that the US authorities inform us in good time of the navigation plan and the planned activities of the fleet group, so that we can ensure that they are in line with the interests of Norwegian security policy. On the Norwegian side, we will be able to reserve ourselves from participating in activities contrary to our interests. At the extreme, we will be able to take over the command of the ship,” writes Enoksen.

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