Norway on Saturday ruled out any mediation in Jammu & Kashmir and expressed a desire to step up co-operation with India for reforms in the United Nations Organisation and UN peacekeeping operations worldwide.
Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said in New Delhi that Oslo is at present pre-occupied with Sri Lanka and also playing a role in Latin America and West Asia. "I don't think we plan any special role in Kashmir. We are not going to take any special responsibility at present."
Speaking to reporters after addressing a seminar on UN peacekeeping, Stoltenberg said he did not rule out a role for India at a later stage in Sri Lanka and said the Norwegians were keeping New Delhi and its embassy in Oslo informed about developments on the island. "We are trying to make all sit together. We are not there to enforce any solution, but to mediate."
Making a strong case for India's permanent membership of the UN Security Council, he said, "It is just not fair that India, being one of the most important countries in the world, is not being represented [in the Security Council]. India could be one of the main voices since it has strong economic growth and has contributed immensely to the UN system."
He added that the Security Council represents the world of the 1950s and India's inclusion would make it more representative and lend an important voice to developing countries.
Stoltenberg said his government was keen to help India overcome its power shortage. Thousands of villages in India are without electricity and his country's technology will help India to provide electricity to all villages by 2012.
Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah thanked the Norwegian consortium for taking up this prestigious project in his state. He said the state has the potential to generate hydroelectric power that will not only meet its own requirement but of several other states as well.
The Sawalkot project in Jammu & Kashmir is one of the six power projects on which memoranda of understanding were signed during the late P R Kumaramangalam's tenure as power minister.
At present, Jammu & Kashmir faces a severe power crisis. The state gets a measly 450 MW of power at present against its requirement of 1900 MW.
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