Newsletter: Frayed Arctic Cooperation

Chief Bill Erasmus, Emily Edenshaw, Gunn-Britt Retter and Benjamin Jacuk.JPG
Chief Bill Erasmus, Emily Edenshaw, at the Alaska Native Heritage Center, Gunn-Britt Retter at the Saami Council and Benjamin Jacuk at the Alaska Native Heritage Center. (Photo: Trine Jonassen)

Dear reader! Russia is looking for cooperation platforms outside the Arctic Council. At the same time, the Northern Fleet is conducting two military exercises and Pentagon announces an update of its Arctic strategy. Editor-in-Chief Arne O. Holm writes about the increasingly frayed Arctic cooperation. Here is the week as seen from the north.

The Norwegian MFA recently announced that 15 Russian diplomats are expelled from Norway. This takes place a mere month before Norway is due to take over the Arctic Council. 

"At the same time, another powerful international alliance is slowly, but systematically moving into the Arctic," writes Editor-in-Chief Arne O. Holm in this week's commentary "Another BRICS in the Wall - or How Walls Are Replacing Cooperation in the Arctic". 

He is referring to Trust Arktikugol, the Russian state-owned company on Svalbard, which is going to develop an international Arctic research station in cooperation with the BRICS countries Brazil, India, China, and South Africa.

Defense news 

Air and naval forces of the Russian Northern Fleet have been in motion for two military exercises this week. 

And just before Easter, we learned that The Pentagon is in the process of updating its Arctic strategy. The previous one is from 2019. 

The US is also active in Greenland, where the American air station Thule Air Base has been renamed. 


After sanctioning the import of most pipeline gas from Russia, the EU is now beginning to target the flow of Russian LNG into the bloc. 

And Russia is discussing the possibility of using non-ice class oil tankers along the Northern Sea Route this summer to deliver Arctic crude oil to Asia. 

Dark past 

Most Arctic nations have been affected by assimilating and oppressive boarding school policies. Now indigenous community leaders are looking for healing as they brace for the dark truth of a government-led genocide.

Also, do not miss the latest news about a submarine cable system that will connect Scandinavia, North America, Ireland, and Japan through the Arctic region. 

Russia is indirectly putting a spanner in the works of Alaska's harvest of pollock and cod. Now Alaska investigates the possibilities for commercial fishing in Arctic waters. 

In other news, we will be present at the Arctic conference High North Dialogue in Bodø, Northern Norway, next week, in which the Editor-in-Chief will moderate several debates. (Article only in Norwegian) 

You can also read op-eds, short news, and much more at High North News. 

On behalf of the editorial staff, I wish you a wonderful weekend, 

Sincerely, News Editor Trine Jonassen