“It's unreasonable and unjustifiable that these Norwegian members of parliament have been refused visas,” Foreign Minister Børge Brende told reporters.
The Norwegian parliament's foreign affairs and defence committee, of which the two MPS were members, has cancelled a planned two-day trip to Moscow that was due to start on Thursday. The committee has 17 members in all.
Moscow said it refused visas to Bard Vegar Solhjell, leader of the Socialist Left party (SV), and Trine Skei Grande, leader of the centre-right Venstre party, over Norway's participation in EU economic sanctions against Russia in response to the Ukraine crisis, although the Nordic nation is not a member of the bloc.
“Russia's decision was a response,” said Konstantin Kosachev, the chair of the foreign affairs committee of the Russian parliament's upper house.
“Moreover, in some cases, Russian lawmakers wanting to visit Norway have been refused visas,” Ria Novosti news agency quoted him as saying.
Ties between the neighbouring countries have been fraught recently over the Syrian conflict, the transit of migrants through Russian territory and the deployment of US troops in Norway as well as Ukraine.