By Colombo Telegraph –
“Bjotveit believes that Rovik is supported by the GSL, and receives funding from Sri Lankan hard-liners. For example, the GSL Ministry of Defense recently posted an op-ed from Rovik and its website also previously advertised one of Rovik’s speaking engagements.” the US Embassy Oslo informed Washington.
A Leaked “CONFIDENTIAL” US diplomatic cable, dated May 02, 2007, recounts the details of a meeting the US Embassy officials has had with the Norwegian MFA Adviser in the Peace and Reconciliation Section, Sondre Bjotveit in Oslo on April 30, 2007 .The Colombo Telegraph found the related leaked cable from the WikiLeaks database which is classified by Acting DCM Kristen F. Bauer.
Under the subheading “Solheim’s Safety; Seeming GSL Endorsement of Detractor” the embassy wrote “According to Bjotveit, the PST (Norway’s primary intelligence agency) is closely following the actions of Falk Rune Rovik, an outspoken critic of Minister Solheim. Previously jailed for murder in 1997, Rovik served ten years of detention in a mental health institution. Viewed by Norwegian authorities as dangerous, he frequently speaks out against Norway’s role in the Sri Lankan press, and most recently visited Toronto, Canada, where he purportedly met with members of Amnesty International. His views, which include accusing Norway of terrorism in Sri Lanka, have proven problematic and embarrassing to the GON, particularly given that Rovik is a Norwegian citizen.”
“Bjotveit believes that Rovik is supported by the GSL, and receives funding from Sri Lankan hard-liners. For example, the GSL Ministry of Defense recently posted an op-ed from Rovik and its website also previously advertised one of Rovik’s speaking engagements. Bjotveit denied that these inflammatory efforts tacitly (if not overtly) supported by the GSL were detracting from the GON’s facilitation efforts. He admitted, however, that the Norwegian cultural predilection for dialogue was being tested by Rovik’s destabilizing actions, which the MFA has responded to in statements to Sri Lankan press.” they further wrote.
Placing a comment the embassy wrote “The GON continues to press the peace process, while recognizing that both the GSL and LTTE have violated the CFA. Rovik further complicates matters and may pose a potential threat to Solheim’s personal security. The GSL’s apparent encouragement of Rovik’s public diatribe against GON efforts is one more destabilizing factor. Although the resilient Norwegians seem calm and focused, their steadfastness to resolving the Sri Lankan crises is being sorely tested by the deepening Sri Lanka violence and Rovik’s protests.”
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