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HE Ms Hege Hertzberg, The Ambassador of Norway to Ghana

NORWEGIAN EMBASSY in Abidjan, serving the West African Countries, has been relocated to Accra, Ghana, for strategic reasons, says one of the top mission officials in Abidjan.

The first secretary of the embassy, Mr. Asgeir Stendal, said the decision to relocate was taken in October 2010, by the Norwegian government. According to him, the decision is due to political and economic reasons, because of the country's relationship and interests in Ghana.

The decision to relocate the embassy to Ghana was more for political reasons, not because of the Ivorian political crisis. The decision had already been taken before the presidential election was held in Cote d'Ivoire last year, said Mr. Stendal.

"The decision was taken because of the Norwegian government's larger interest in Ghana, using to establish a diplomatic web with the other countries, including Ivory Coast. We have already said goodbye to our friends in the Ivorian diplomatic circle, as the embassy started its operation in Accra on July 1. He added.

Mr. Stendal said the Norwegian government has approved four million Euro to assist Ivory Coast in reconstruction after the political crisis. It will be recalled that the British embassy in Ivory Coast was also relocated to Accra, after the first political crisis between 2002 and 2004.
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