In recent weeks, High North News has covered the increasing tension between NATO, Russia and China in the High North and the Arctic.
In early May, a group of American and British warships sailed into the Barents Sea for the first time since the Cold War.
Russian authorities perceived this as a conscious threat and Russia responded by announcing and conducting its own exercises in the Norwegian Sea and the Barents Sea.
Former US Ambassador to Norway and current US Marine Minister Kenneth J. Braithwaite recently warned against Russian and Chinese efforts to challenge NATO’s interests in the High North.
“Russia’s hope is to be relevant again on the world stage, where we all believe or all come to understand that China wants to be dominant on that same world stage. And they have really pressed hard upon Norway to be part of that calculus», Braithwaite said last May.
Russia’s Embassy in Norway comments on recent events in the Arctic in an email to High North News:
“Increasing Norwegian military activity and pulling NATO to the region is a direct route to undermining existing peace, stability and spirit of cooperation.”
“The Russian side has repeatedly presented proposals aiming to reduce tension as well as the intensity of military exercises, and maintaining restraint on the border line between Russia and NATO.”
“Our country still opposes militarization of the Arctic and is in favor of a peaceful, joint development of the region using amongst others the Northern Sea Route.”
High North News will monitor developments.
This article was originally published in Norwegian and has been translated by HNN's Elisabeth Bergquist.