The new NATO Secretary General, Former Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, emphasized his long and productive relationship with Russia in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, a day after he took office.
“As a Norwegian politician in Norway, a country bordering Russia, I have developed a working relationship with Russia,” he said. “And we were able also during the coldest period of the Cold War to work with Russia on issues like fishery, energy, environment. . . .
“He also has a complicated past with NATO, having at one point in his life opposed Norway’s membership in the military alliance.
“I think that all people develop,” he said. “And I think that’s a good thing.”
“The Labour Party was strongly in favor of NATO membership. But the Young Labour Party disagreed. But when I was the chairman, I was able to convince the Young Labour Party to be in favor.”
“So I think you can hardly find any other Norwegian politician who [has] fought so hard for being in favor of NATO as I did when I turned my organization from being against to be in favor.”