King of Norway delivers emotionally charged speech in favour of LGBT rights, refugees and tolerance

'Norwegians are girls who love girls, boys who love boys, and boys and girls who love each other. Norwegians believe in God, Allah, everything and nothing,' says King Harald V

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The Independent Online

The King of Norway has delivered an impassioned speech in favour of LGBT rights and the plight of refugees in the country.

Speaking to over 1,000 guests at a garden party outside the Royal Palace in Oslo, King Harald V of Norway argued the concept of home transcended borders and urged Norway to embrace “trust, solidarity, and generosity”.

Since the centre-right coalition gained power in 2013 and ended eight years of Labour Party rule, right-wing anti-immigration rhetoric has risen in the country. Fronted by Erna Solberg, the coalition includes the Conservative Party and the Progress Party, an anti-immigration party which has previously warned about the “sneak-Islamisation” of Norwegian society.

“Norwegians are also immigrants from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Poland, Sweden, Somalia and Syria," the King said.

"It is not always easy to say where we come from, to which nationality we belong. Home is where the heart is. That cannot always be placed within country borders.

“Norwegians are girls who love girls, boys who love boys, and boys and girls who love each other".

Making a pop culture reference, the King said Norwegians were united by their love for Greig, a leading Norwegian Romantic era composer, Kygo, a Norweigan DJ, Hellbillies, a Norweigan rock band and Kari Bremnes, a Norweigan singer.

“Norwegians believe in God, Allah, everything and nothing. Norwegians like Grieg, Kygo, Hellbillies and Kari Bremnes. In other words: you are Norway. We are Norway".

“My biggest hope for Norway is that we will manage to take care of each other, that we can build this country further on trust, solidarity, and generosity.”

Norway is a constitutional monarchy so the king has no power. Instead, he represents the country in a ceremonial role.

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