December 23, 2010 / 6:15 PM / 10 years ago

Norway's top diplomat finds WikiLeaks "fascinating"

OSLO, Dec 23 (Reuters) - Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere said secret U.S. documents published by WikiLeaks made “fascinating” reading and are turning the tables on governments used to having the upper hand on the media. “I admit — it is fascinating to read from parts of the raw material of foreign policy, perhaps especially for us who work in diplomacy every day,” Stoere wrote in an article published on his Labour Party’s website on Thursday.

“We are like voyeurs who get unexpected access... and it grows even more powerful since it comes from U.S. sources.”

Stoere said the WikiLeaks phenomenon had given journalists access to information normally reserved for state officials, providing reporters with an advantage they didn’t usually enjoy.

“I have to smile because now the roles between the media and the authorities are almost reversed,” he said.

“Now, we in the ministry are asking for access to the press! And we will obviously have to taste our own medicine because there is limited access,” Stoere wrote, adding that his request for access to an unpublished WikiLeaks document about Norwegian-Russian relations was denied by Norwegian journalists.

Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten said this week that it had gained hold of all 250,000 leaked U.S. documents, the vast majority of which had not yet been published.

Stoere criticised the “unfaithful” government workers who had leaked the documents but said there was nothing published so far relating to Norway that had surprised him.

Reporting by Wojciech Moskwa; Editing by Peter Graff

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