OSLO, Feb. 1 (Xinhua) -- Norway's foreign ministry on Wednesday summoned Russia's ambassador to the Nordic country to protest that some Norwegian Members of Parliament (MPs) had been denied visas to visit Russia.
"It is deeply regrettable that some members of the parliamentary foreign affairs and defense committee were not given the opportunity to visit Russia, despite an invitation from the head of the (Russian) Council of the Federation committee on foreign affairs," Norway's foreign affairs minister Borge Brende said in a statement.
The Norwegian foreign ministry protested to Russia through diplomatic channels immediately after the information about the visa rejections was received, according to the statement.
"The ministry of foreign affairs called in the Russian ambassador today to reiterate our protest," he said.
The Norwegian foreign minister said meetings of parliamentarians between the two countries formed an important part of political dialogue and the planned visit "would have brought this dialogue further."
According to the statement, the reason given by the Russian authorities was that Norway had implemented the EU's restrictive measures against Russia. The restrictive measures were justified by the Norwegian side as a consequence of Russian actions in Ukraine.