Only formalities remain before the former foreign minister is formally appointed. Once the US State Department has considered the application and forwarded it to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the formal decision rests with the King.
From 2013 to 2021, Annigan Hütfeld was Chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Security at the Storting. From 2021, Huitfeldt Støres was foreign minister until October last year, when he abdicated in favor of Espen Barth Eide.
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Anniken out, Anniken in
Current US Ambassador Anniken Krutnes will step down as ambassador in August and the government has been working to find a successor. The position of ambassador to the United States is considered one of the most important diplomatic positions one can hold in the Norwegian state apparatus.
But not everyone was equally happy with Huitfeldt's selection as the new US ambassador. He has long been speculated to be the current candidate, wondered John Holland Modlary, a professor at the Foreign Office and former secretary of state.
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Prof. Steeler: – Unacceptable
He believes that a politician should not be given the post of ambassador, when the post is more professional.
– Appointment of politicians to administrative positions is unacceptable. Should a retired fisheries minister be given the post of traveling chief of the fisheries ministry? The politicization of public administration is most unfortunate and destructive because the distinction between subjects and politics is blurred. This weakens democracy and promotes populism as politics permeates all sectors, Mudlari tells DN.
Modlari, who was State Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the KRF in the Pontevik government in the late 90s, later became Professor of International Politics at the University of Oslo.
– Professionalism is set aside to give a “leg” to the resigned politician. Because diplomacy is a subject that requires experience and education. So, a diplomat, with at least 20-30 years of service, skill and aptitude, becomes ambassador only in high-profile places like DC, he tells the newspaper:
– Being a diplomat is completely different from being a politician: subtlety, interpreting what is said, communicating in small print, thinking strategically – “disciplines” that are not learned overnight, Medley continues.
To Netavisen, Frp's party leader Sylvie Listag says she is on record saying that Labor now appears to be giving a party colleague an ambassadorship.
– If this is true, then Jonas Karstor shows very poor judgement. It's one of the most prestigious top jobs in the Foreign Service, too important to be used by Labor in an attempt to avoid internal political squabbling, says Lystock.
He would remind the prime minister that he had no confidence in Huitfeldt as foreign minister just a few months earlier.
– It seems very special that she should suddenly qualify for this position after such a short period of time. We believe that the best qualified candidate will get the most important job in the Norwegian Foreign Service. From what we can see in the media, it's clear that there are other candidates with better qualifications, Listak says.
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— Gufs from old Ap
Mutlari isn't the only one with problems now that Huitfeldt has been chosen as the new US ambassador. Bård Ludvig Thorheim of the same hire. In an interview with VG, he was unkind in his explanation of the decision.
– The impression many people have, including myself, is that this is a hoax of the old Labor party, which hands itself positions for faithful service, Thorheim tells the newspaper.
He adds that everyone knows how Støre fired Huitfeldt as foreign minister, and that he seems to be offering Huitfeldt the ambassadorship as a reward for quietly walking out the door.
– Being a foreign minister does not qualify you for such a job. It is about the qualities you must have and you have a strong background as a diplomat. And he continued to say in the newspaper that there are many people who are more qualified for this post than him.
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