The Norwegian Constitution states that all Norwegian citizens have a duty to defend their country. However, women do not have constitutional obligation for military service. This issue was discussed in Ap’s new party program.
According to Aftenposten’s report, the program committee voted against a gender-neutral military. Director of the committee, Helga Pedersen confirmed that the majority of the committee is opposed an equal military service.
– We agree with the idea that army should recruit more women. But the military has already needed fewer people, so it is wrong to extend conscription.
As a response, the youth organization of the party AUF launched a fight to get the committee to change their decision.
– This is an important issue for the AUF, and we will bring it up at the congress. There is a gender question: Do we want to preserve the institutionalized differences as we have today? Military is better when it includes both sexes. It’s not about making all girls soldiers, but boys and girls are given the same duties, said AUF leader Eskil Pedersen to Aftenposten.
Norwegian military aims women to make up 20 percent of its recruitment by 2020. There is disagreement on the issue among the coalition parties.