Monday, October 20, 2014

No need for NATO presence in Arctic (Lavrov)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday he sees no need of NATO presence in the Arctic.
“We firmly believe that there are no problems in the Arctic which demand NATO participation, moreover, there are no problems there which demand military decisions,” the minister said during a public lecture on Russia’s foreign policy.
According to Lavrov, long before the Ukrainian crisis, NATO said and continues saying that the military factor in the Arctic will increase amid the escalation of the fight for the resources.

“The Arctic is a territory of dialogue,” the minister stressed. “We use this slogan for regular forums in Russia, and the work of the Arctic Council, to a large extent, is drawn up in this way,” he said.

The eight members of the Arctic Council are Russia, Denmark, Canada, Norway, Iceland, Finland, Sweden, and the United States.

There is a common understanding among the Arctic states that all of them are interdependent and have joint tasks, namely the ecology and the need to ensure the safety of transport routes of the Northern Sea Route, he said.
“We are jointly interested in cooperating in defending our bids to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf,” Lavrov said.

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