• Norway edition
 
Future US envoy displays total ignorance of Norway
George Tsunis speaking to the US senate on Tuesday - Source: Screen Grab

Future US envoy displays total ignorance of Norway

Published: 23 Jan 2014 08:47 GMT+01:00
Updated: 23 Jan 2014 08:47 GMT+01:00

Asked by Senator John McCain what he thought it was about the "anti-immigration" Progress Party that appealed to Norwegian voters, Greek American businessman George Tsunis seemed unaware of the party's role in the ruling coalition. 
 
"You get some fringe elements that have a microphone and spew their hatred," he said in the pre-appointment hearing. "And I will tell you Norway has been very quick to denounce them." 
 
McCain interrupted him, pointing out that as part of the coalition, the party was hardly being denounced. 
 
"I stand corrected,"  Tsunis said after a pause.  "I would like to leave my answer at... it's a very,very open society and the overwhelming amount of Norwegians and the overwhelming amount of people in parliament don't feel the same way."
 
The blunder came after a faltering, incoherent performance from Tsunis, in which he made a reference to Norway's "president", apparently under the impression that the country is a republic rather than a constitutional monarchy. 
 
Tsunis founded the hotel management company Chartwell Hotels, which operates properties for InterContinental Hotels, and other major hotel groups. He is one of the leading figures in the Greek-American establishment, and is heavily involved in the Greek Orthodox Church. 
 
He donated $267,244 to the Democratic party in the 2012 election cycle, and $278,531 in 2010, making him one of the party's top individual donors. 

The Local (news@thelocal.no)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Norway to send military staff in fight against IS
Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende and Minister of Defence Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide at a press conference in connection with US's request for help in the war against IS. Photo: Terje Pedersen /

Norway to send military staff in fight against IS

Norway will send military personnel to help the US-led coalition defeat the terrorist group IS, the government confirmed on Thursday. READ  

Ole Gunnar Solskjær quits as Cardiff City boss
Ole Gunnar Solskjær quit as Cardiff City boss after a run of poor results. Photo: David Rawcliffe/Propaganda / NTB scanpix

Ole Gunnar Solskjær quits as Cardiff City boss

Norway's Ole Gunnar Solskjær has stepped down as Cardiff City manager after less than nine months in the job and a poor start to this year's season, the club announced on Thursday. READ  

Father warns Breivik 'more extreme than ever'
Jens Breivik at the press conference for the launch of his new book "Min skyld?". Photo: Torstein Bøe / NTB scanpix

Father warns Breivik 'more extreme than ever'

Jens Breivik, the father of mass killer Anders Behring Breivik, revealed on Thursday his son is becoming more and more extreme in prison and fears he may never see him again. READ  

Solberg in stalemate over Russian chess match
Prime Minister Erna Solberg under pressure to miss the Sochi chess tournament. Photo: Jon Olav Nesvold / NTB scanpix

Solberg in stalemate over Russian chess match

Prime Minister Erna Solberg has declined attending the Chess World Championship in Sochi this November, it was announced on Wednesday. READ  

Syrian to head Norway's Worker Youth League
Syrian-born Mani Hussaini will soon be inaugurated as leader of Workers Youth League in Norway. Photo: Jon Olav Nesvold / NTB scanpix

Syrian to head Norway's Worker Youth League

A Syrian-born immigrant is to become the next leader of Norway's Workers' Youth League, in an ironic twist for Anders Behring Breivik, the far-right nationalist who shot dead scores of the movement's members in 2011. READ  

Weather a bigger problem than war: study
Melting ice caps in the Arctic Circle are just one threat to people. Photo: Shutterstock

Weather a bigger problem than war: study

Natural disasters last year displaced three times more people than violent conflicts, showing the urgent need to improve resilience for vulnerable people when fighting climate change, stated a Norwegian study just published. READ  

Breivik says father can't visit unless he's a fascist
Anders Behring Breivik in court in 2012. Photo: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix

Breivik says father can't visit unless he's a fascist

Anders Behring Breivik will not allow his father, Jens Breivik, to visit him in prison unless his father becomes a fascist, it was revealed on Tuesday. READ  

Norwegian ski star faces life ban from driving
Norwegian cross country skier Petter Northug. Photo: Ned Alley / NTB scanpix

Norwegian ski star faces life ban from driving

Cross country skier Petter Northug may be stripped of his driving licence for life in Norway after he admitted he crashed his car in Trondheim while under the influence of alcohol. READ  

Islamist warns Norway of joining war in Iraq
Extremist Arfan Bhatti. Photo: Håkon Mosvold Larsen / Scanpix

Islamist warns Norway of joining war in Iraq

An Islamist, recently released from prison in Pakistan, warned Norway against joining the US-led coalition primed to attack the Islamic State. READ  

Muslim politician to run for mayor in Oslo
Former leader of Islamic Council Norway, Shoaib Sultan (right) with its new leader, Senaid Kobilica. Photo: Berit Roald / Scanpix

Muslim politician to run for mayor in Oslo

Shoaib Sultan, a Green Party politician and the former head of Norway's Islamic Council, is set to run for mayor of Oslo, it was announced on Tuesday. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Norwegian man in 7,000 litre 'Ice Truck Challenge'
Society
Norwegian brewery pulls 'fart-smelling' beer
Sport
Ødegaard: Norway's youngest player ever
Features
Meet Norway's raining kings of fashion
National
Miracle cat survives 20 gunshots in Norway
National
Second death within hours at Chess Olympics
National
Norway and Sweden mark 200 years of peace
Culture
Interview: Helene Meldahl, selfie artist
Society
Now serving ... Norway's smallest bar
Travel
Floating Northern Lights hotel planned in Norway
National
Circus camel escapes again
National
Swiss bus driver charged with careless driving in fatal Norway crash
Society
Brit's charity tractor trek heads for Norway
National
Norway lifts Segway ban
Culture
GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway
Society
Høie promises to reform sex change law
Education
Norway fjord invaded by monster jellyfish
Culture
VIDEO: Norwegian anti-Facebook film goes viral
Culture
Norway pop duo hits number 4 on US charts
Sport
Norway fan wins big on Suarez bite bet
National
Solberg 'most chatty' leader on Twitter
Culture
British Airways takes 'Slow TV' to the skies
International
Top Norway lawyers back Snowden Nobel
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

319
jobs available