Spain protest saw Norwegian flag absent / News / The Foreigner

Spain protest saw Norwegian flag absent. MADRID/VALENCIA/STAVANGER: Embassy staff did not unfurl the national ensign to demonstrators’ cries of “shame”. Some 200 people gathered in front of the Royal Norwegian Embassy in the Spanish capital, Wednesday, showing their support for the some 12,000 Spanish seamen. These sailors, who served on Norwegian Merchant Marine ships between 1950 and 1994, paid tax to Norway during that time.

spain, sailors, pension, tax, norway, ships, paywall



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Spain protest saw Norwegian flag absent

Published on Thursday, 18th December, 2014 at 23:32 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 22nd January 2015 at 08:47.

MADRID/VALENCIA/STAVANGER: Embassy staff did not unfurl the national ensign to demonstrators’ cries of “shame”.

Protestors in Madrid holding a banner
Some 200 gathered at the demonstration against Norway.Protestors in Madrid holding a banner
Photo: Angela Sepulveda/Long Hope Association


Some 200 people gathered in front of the Royal Norwegian Embassy in the Spanish capital, Wednesday, showing their support for the some 12,000 Spanish seamen.

These sailors, who served on Norwegian Merchant Marine ships between 1950 and 1994, paid tax to Norway during that time.

The Long Hope Association, representing surviving seamen and/or their families, are demanding this money is repaid.

Protestors outside the Norwegian embassy
Protestors outside the Norwegian embassy
Angela Sepulveda/Long Hope Association
Delegates were in Oslo in November to state their claim following Parliamentary Ombudsman Aage Thor Falkanger’s decision to reopen the matter.

They met with Deputy Labour and Social Affairs Minister Thor Kleppen Sættem, Parliamentary Ombudsman Aage Thor Falkanger, unions, and the Spanish Ambassador to Norway, His Excellency Antonio López Martínez.

Meetings were also held with law firm Grette, and EU Ambassador to Norway, Helen Campbell. The Spanish Embassy in the Norwegian capital assisted.

Wednesday’s demonstration, which was peaceful, according to Long Hope Association spokesperson Alberto Paz Viñas, was the first of what could be a series of monthly ones until the matter is settled in some way.

“They [Norwegian embassy personnel] hid the flag. They opened the windows and were standing at them talking on their mobiles. Some of them came out onto the balcony to hear what we were saying,” he said to The Foreigner by phone from Valencia.

Norwegian embassy in Madrid
Norwegian embassy in Madrid
Angela Sepulveda/Long Hope Association
“We called for the Ambassador’s [Christopher Johan Vibe] presence on the balcony about 60 times during the protest. Nobody came out. I think they felt ashamed and wanted to be anonymous.”

According to Mr Viñas, demonstrators also shouted slogans such as “Norway, here we are waiting for our human rights”, and “Norway please refund what belongs to us.”

They also sang songs. This included the popular Galician La Rianxeira, The Foreigner was told.

Long Hope’s next demonstration will be on 22nd January. This will be larger-scale, however. Mr Viñas declared that this will involve thousands of people.

“We’ll be marching from our demonstration outside the Norwegian Embassy to Puerto Del Sol in the centre of Madrid. We’ll be taking the Norwegian flag with us, distributing pamphlets to people, shouting protests, and walking around saying what Norway is.”




Published on Thursday, 18th December, 2014 at 23:32 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 22nd January 2015 at 08:47.

This post has the following tags: spain, sailors, pension, tax, norway, ships, paywall.





  
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