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‘The crisis in Syria is having unspeakable consequences for millions of people in Syria and its neighbouring countries. Norway is now increasing its aid to Syria and the region to NOK 2.4 billion for 2016. We intend to maintain this high level of assistance and will provide a total of around NOK 10 billion over the next four years,’ said Prime Minister Erna Solberg.

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"Women can make a comprehensive and significant contribution to peacemaking in Syria". This was one of the main conclusions in a seminar held on 9 February 2016 hosted by the Permanent Mission of Sweden in Geneva, the foundation “Kvinna til Kvinna” and the Syrian grassroots organization Badael Foundation.

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Photo: UN.

6 February 2016 marks the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). Norway continues to stand up against this harmful practice.

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Photo: Russell Watkins/Department for International Development.

2.8 million Syrian children are out of school because of conflict, however, many still have access to mobile phones. Norway is therefore inviting the world’s game developers to come up with the best possible application to allow Syrian children to continue their learning.

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Photo: NF/Werner Anderson/Flickr/CC BY.

Colombia remains one of the most landmine-contaminated countries in the world. On 5 February 2016 US President Barack Obama launched a joint US-Norwegian global anti-landmine initiative that will raise awareness of the issue of humanitarian mine clearance and the goal to make Colombia mine-free by 2021.

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Aedes mosquitos can spread the Zika virus. 
Photo: James L. Occi/AFPMB/Flickr/CC BY.

When Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende met with WHO Director-General Margaret Chan in Geneva 29 January 2016, he pledged a rapid contribution of 10 mio Norwegian kroner (approx. 1 mio USD) to help fight the virus.

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The participating countries (in blue) in the TiSA negotiations. 
Photo: Torbjørn Vagstein, MFA.

The first TiSA negotiating round of the year was held in Geneva 31 January - 5 February 2016. This round focused on the annexes related to movement of natural persons (“Mode 4”), financial services, electronic commerce, telecommunications and localization.

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Universal Periodic Review – January 2016 session

Last updated: 02.02.2016

The 24th session of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) took place in the Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva from 18 – 29 January 2016.

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Minister Brende Meets High Commissioner Zeid

Last updated: 03.02.2016

On Friday 29 January 2016, Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende met with the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, in Geneva.

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Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende discussed trade in Davos

Last updated: 27.01.2016

Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende underscored the role of trade as an engine for growth and development. The Minister noted the contributions of the services sector to job creation.

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Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende talks trade in Geneva

Last updated: 08.02.2016

On Friday 29 January 2016, Minister Brende met with the Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Roberto Azevêdo, in Geneva. Minister Brende and the Director-General exchanged views on the way forward for the WTO, building on the Ministerial Conference in Nairobi in December and the informal ministerial gathering in Davos 23 January.

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