Norway restricts public access to its embassies

Norway has restricted public access to 15 of its embassies in the Middle east and Africa (MENA), including its embassy in Saudi Arabia, said Norway’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Frode Andersen via telephone interview from Oslo, on Tuesday.

Andersen said all Norwegian embassies in MENA region are still accepting phone calls and e-mails but “public access to the premises has been restricted.”

The move follow s a security threat in the Middle East and the decision by the US to close diplomatic posts across the MENA region and beyond, he added.The US has already announced keeping some of its embassies in the MENA region closed until the end of the week as a precautionary measure due to a possible Al-Qaeda terror threat.

Andresen said: “Norway’s embassy in Riyadh, or any diplomatic mission in the MENA region for that matter, is not closed.” He clarified that Oslo has upgraded security and has taken necessary measures in the wake of threats from Al- Qaeda. The US, Britain and Germany have also closed their embassies in Yeman, which is the focal point in the current security dossier released by the US and Interpol.

The UK government, in fact, has temporarily withdrawn staff from its embassy in yemen, in addition to shuttering the mission altogether due to what the authorities claimed as “increased security concerns.”

the British Foreign officer (FCO) followed suit after the US State Department advised its citizens to leave yemen immediately and also withdrew all non-essential US government staff.

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