Truth commission for Sami, Kven finds support in Norwegian Parliament

By Elisabeth Bergquist, High North News - June 14, 2017
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Reindeer in Northern Norway. (Lawrence Hislop / GRID Arendal)
Reindeer in Northern Norway. (Lawrence Hislop / GRID Arendal)

The majority of the Norwegian Parliament’s Control and Constitutional Standing Committee supports a suggestion about setting up a truth commission in order to investigate the ‘Norsification’ that Sami and Kven people had to go through for about a century, starting in the mid-1800s.

With the exception of the Conservatives and the Progressive Party, which currently hold the government, all parties in the Storting (Norwegian Parliament) support the proposal, according to Norwegian broadcaster NRK.

“There is a majority in the Control and Constitutional Standing Committee for creating such a commission. This means that there will be a majority in Parliament. We can thus safely say that the Parliament will support this in Tuesday’s vote,” says Martin Kolberg (Labor), Chairperson of the Committee.

It has not yet been decided whether such a committee will actually be called a “truth committee.”

The Storting has requested that the presidency work out a proposal for a mandate, name and constitution of the committee.

The issue was originally raised in the Sameting (the Sami Parliament) in 2014.