Norwegian intelligence expects a “more authoritarian and militarized” Russian state

“There is no turning back,” said Monday the number two of Norway’s military intelligence service, for which China and Russia are the main threats to Oslo.

By Le Figaro with AFP

Published 2/13/2023 at 4:22 PM, updated 2/13/2023 at 5:03 PM

This content is not accessible to all.

Deputy head of Norway’s intelligence services Lars Nordrum during a press conference in Oslo, Norway, February 13, 2023. FREDRIK VARFJELL / AFP

The Russian state is set to become “more authoritarian and militarized” in the coming years, Norwegian intelligence services estimated on Monday, February 13, for which Russia and China remain the main threats to the Nordic country.

“There’s no turning back” possible, Norway’s military intelligence No. 2 Lars Nordrum hammered while presenting an annual assessment of the risks facing Norway, a NATO member country bordering Russia.

This content is not accessible to all.

Norway at the heart of the game

“The Russian state is becoming more authoritarian and militarized,” he said, citing Russian public opinion manipulated by propaganda and Moscow’s closer ties with other authoritarian regimes. “Russian interests will not be compatible with those of the West.” This annual risk assessment, the first since war broke out in Ukraine on February 24, 2022, concludes, like the previous ones, that Russia and China pose the main threats to Norway’s security and interests.

” ALSO READ – Should Norway share the wealth it amassed during this wartime with Ukraine?

The war was “a catastrophe for Russia,” affirmed Lars Nordrum, referring to the effects of the trade sanctions imposed by Western countries, Moscow’s international isolation and “more than 100,000 Russian soldiers killed or injured (…)”. Ukraine. The conflict has increased Norway’s geopolitical importance, particularly as it has become the main gas supplier to the European continent over Russia. “European countries will be dependent on Norwegian energy supplies for many years,” he noted.

“Pressure on Energy Security”

The Domestic Intelligence Service (PST) therefore understands that Russia, which last year tried to “put pressure on energy security”, will this year “try to collect as much information as possible” about the oil sector, gas and electricity in Norway . However, a sabotage of Norway’s energy infrastructure by Russia in 2023 is “unlikely”, judged PST boss Beate Gangas.

” READ ALSO – Nord Stream 2: An American journalist accuses Washington of sabotage

“Nevertheless, acts of sabotage can become a current scenario if Russia wants to escalate the conflict with NATO and the West,” specifies the PST report, which has been freed of the most confidential information. The alleged sabotage of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines in the neighboring Baltic Sea last year, an act for which Russia and the United States blame each other, had prompted Norway to tighten security around its strategic locations, including its power plants .

SEE ALSO – The Russian army claims the capture of a village near Bakhmout

This content is not accessible to all.