Norway stood by its decision to admit two Hamas lawmakers next month. Oslo on Monday rebuffed U.S. pressure to cancel a May 15 visit by a Palestinian Authority parliamentary delegation, which is to include two members of the Islamic terrorist group and will meet a local pro-Palestinian lobby. Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere said members of his office would take the opportunity to hold talks with the delegates. “Norway’s government has not invited Hamas to Norway, but if people with a Hamas background come here, we will meet with them,” Stoere told reporters. Norway is not a member of the European Union, which, like the United States, lists Hamas as a terrorist group. The Hamas delegates are to visit neighboring Sweden on May 16, but not to hold official talks.
April 26, 2006