Norwegian police want to question PM over illegal sushi party that broke Covid-19 rules

Police in Norway say they want to question PM Erna Solberg after she and her husband admitted to flouting the country’s strict Covid-19 rules by hosting a sushi party for their family to mark her 60th birthday last month.

The prime minister and her husband Sindre Finnes will be questioned after they were joined by 12 other family members at a gathering in the ski resort of Geilo at the end of February, police confirmed on Monday. Under Norway’s current coronavirus rules, gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited.

Last week, broadcaster NRK said 13 members of Solberg’s family dined at a restaurant on 25 February. The PM wasn’t in attendance as she had returned to Oslo to be checked out in a hospital for eye problems.

Solberg, however, was present the next day when 14 gathered in a flat to eat sushi.

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Police said Monday they had received more than a dozen complaints about the gathering. They said the investigation will be prioritized depending on other ongoing cases and said they were “seeking clarity” on what happened.

“I am sorry that my family and I have broken the corona regulations, that should never have happened,” Solberg posted on Facebook. “We of course should have followed all the recommendations, as I have asked you to do.”

“I understand those who get angry and disappointed over this. I have made a mistake and for that, I want to say I’m sorry.”

Solberg mostly likely faces a fine of 20,000 kroner ($2,350) for the offense but it also carries a 15-day jail sentence in some instances. She has led Norway since 2013 and faces re-election in September.

Norway has reported nearly 87,000 cases of coronavirus in the past year and recorded 648 Covid-related deaths.

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