The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has informed Somaliland that they expect the death sentence against a Norwegian citizen will not be enforced.

On Friday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had a meeting with a representative from Somaliland in Norway.


“We gave a clear message in the meeting that the death penalty is unacceptable and must not be executed, and that the Norwegian citizen must have access to ordinary legal proceedings,” Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide (H) said.

On Wednesday, newspaper Dagbladet reported that a 54-year-old Norwegian citizen had been sentenced to death in Somaliland.

The prosecution believes he deliberately killed a younger man.

The 54-year-old claims he was attacked on the street without warning and defended himself.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs takes this matter very seriously. We distance ourselves from all use of the death penalty.

“I have a great understanding that this situation is difficult for both the Norwegian and his family,” Søreide said.

Norwegian Authorities Says The Execution Of Its Citizen In Somaliland Is Unacceptable
Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide. Photo: Heiko Junge / NTB

Assurances from Somaliland

The Norwegian citizen’s lawyer has received an assurance from the country’s foreign minister that the execution will not happen immediately.

“I just talked to him. He says that there is nothing to indicate that the Norwegian citizen will be executed in the next few days.

“The verdict is not final, he said and emphasized that the Norwegian has the appeal,” associate lawyer Farid Bouras told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK).

Foreign Minister Yasin Haji Mohamoudom promised Bouras that the matter would be taken up with the president of the self-proclaimed republic.

SV comments

Norwegian parliament (Storting) representative Petter Eide (SV), who sits on the justice committee, believes that Norway’s efforts for Joshua French and Tjostolv Moland, who were sentenced to death in Congo, set a standard in such cases.

“I expect the Norwegian authorities and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to do absolutely everything they can to prevent this from happening.

“Norway has an obligation to help its citizens from being executed,” he told NRK.

Eide says he is so far not satisfied with the efforts of the authorities.

Consular assistance

Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen says that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has worked consularly with the case since the Norwegian was arrested in April.

They have intensified the work after he was sentenced to death on Wednesday.

“We work through all relevant diplomatic channels, both here in Oslo and at our embassy in Nairobi,” she noted.

Assistant lawyer Bouras says that the Norwegian embassy in Nairobi has provided good consular assistance in the case.

“The situation is, of course, dramatic, and anything can happen in Somaliland.

“My client is struggling physically and mentally. He is not receiving vital medication and is terrified of being shot at any time,” Bouras wrote to news bureau NTB.

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