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Oslo: Bjørnar Moxnes, the former leader of the Reds Party (Rødt) in Oslo, is currently on sick leave. This comes after he was caught shoplifting several small items from a grocery store over the past two months. He admits to what he calls “self-destructive behavior” and is now receiving mental health care.

Expressing regret, Moxnes apologized for letting many people down and acknowledged that his actions have interfered with the important work of the Reds Party. He was reported to the police for shoplifting in October and November, stealing items like six packs of cheese and a package of salmon. He immediately paid a fine of NOK 15,000 (nearly USD 1,500) after being summoned for a police hearing.

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Moxnes felt compelled to step down as the Reds Party leader after an earlier incident where he stole a pair of Hugo Boss sunglasses from a tax-free shop at Oslo’s main airport last summer. Despite resigning from leadership, he still holds his position as an elected Member of Parliament and returned to work for the fall session. He has been active in various activities, including supporting Palestinians and advocating for the expulsion of Israel’s ambassador to Norway.

However, Moxnes continues to face mental health challenges, which he openly acknowledged. He mentioned that this recent shoplifting incident is another manifestation of the issues he faced last summer.

Marie Sneve Martinussen succeeded Moxnes as the Reds Party leader and has been working on rebuilding trust in the party. She emphasized the seriousness of the situation and expressed relief that Moxnes is seeking help for his problems. Martinussen stated that it’s too early to determine Moxnes’ future role in the party but affirmed that, as an elected Member of Parliament, he cannot relinquish his seat. Moxnes’ sick leave was expected to continue until the end of November, with another Reds member, Stine Westrum, temporarily taking his place in the party’s parliamentary roster.

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