Norwegian Foreign Minister, Khurshid visit Arctic region

Oslo (Norway), June 12 (ANI): Norway's Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide is hosting his Indian counterpart Salman Khurshid in Norway this week. Together they are travelling in the Arctic - the city of Tromso and the archipelago of Svalbard.

"The Arctic is the Norwegian government's number one foreign policy priority. Our goal is to ensure peaceful, sustainable and prosperous development in this region. I am happy that Minister Khurshid had the chance to visit so soon after India became a permanent observer to the Arctic Council", said Barth Eide.

Khurshid is the first cabinet minister from a new observer state to visit the Arctic since the club of observers was expanded in May.

On the Svalbard islands, the two foreign ministers will visit Ny Alesund, a research station situated at 79 degrees north and the world's northernmost permanent settlement. There they will visit two neighboring research stations, Indian Himadri and Norwegian Sverdrup.

The delegation will also visit UNIS, Svalbard University, and among other things interact with Indian PhD students living and working in the Arctic.

Norway and India are committed to a close cooperation in combatting and mitigating climate change - in the Arctic and globally. Understanding climate change in the Arctic will help understand changes also in India. Joint research will lead towards solutions to global problems.

In Oslo, Khurshid will have bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg and Minister of Defence Anne-Grete Strom-Erichsen. (ANI)

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