NATO’s military build-up in the Arctic could lead to an escalation in the region. This was stated on Sunday, May 14, in an interview with TASS by Ambassador-at-Large of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Chairman of the Committee of Senior Officials of the Arctic Council Nikolai Korchunov.
“We see no signs of improvement in the military security situation in the Arctic. NATO continues to expand into this region, the scale of the alliance’s military exercises being held there, in which its non-Arctic member countries are actively involved, is increasing. Their military potential is being built up in high latitudes,” he said.
In addition, Korchunov reported on the strengthening of the West’s course towards confrontation and confrontation. According to him, they promote their own interests in the Arctic, ignoring the interests of other states.
The Ambassador noted that under such conditions, the possibility of an escalation of the situation in the Arctic region is not ruled out. He stressed that in the strategic documents of the Arctic countries, the Russian Federation is also presented as a threat to security as an adversary. North wind: the United States intends to resist Russia in the Arctic However, Washington is aware of its lagging behind in the development of the polar territories
Earlier, on April 25, Nikolai Korchunov told Izvestia that the policy of the United States and its allies leads to an increase in conflict potential in the Arctic. According to him, additional risks for regional security are associated with increased activity in the high latitudes of non-Arctic NATO member states, in particular the UK.
Prior to this, on March 16, Korchunov said that the Russian Federation is extremely wary of US statements about preparations for potential conflicts in the Arctic with Russia and China. He believes that the Arctic is a peaceful region, and its military development by the United States is a concern.
January 30, the Military Times reported that the US National Guard is preparing for possible conflicts with Russia and China in the Arctic. According to columnist Megan Myers, the Northern Strike exercise took place in northern Michigan in January. Their task was to check the readiness of the military for action in conditions of low temperatures.
It was specified that special forces of Latvia also took part in the exercises. In addition, US allies, in particular Norway, are also active in the Arctic.
Prior to this, on November 21, the Chairman of the Committee of Senior Officials of the Arctic Council, Ambassador-at-Large of the Russian Foreign Ministry Nikolai Korchunov said in an interview with Izvestia that the increasing military activity of NATO in the Arctic, including due to the expansion of the bloc, — one of the main security challenges in the region. At the same time, he stressed that the Russian Federation in its policy proceeds from the fact that there are no issues in the Arctic that require a military solution.
In August 2022, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced that the alliance plans to increase its presence in the Arctic. He justified the actions of the alliance by the great strategic importance of the region.
In response, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov noted that such statements are perceived by Russia as an expression of intent to oppose the Russian Federation and Russian interests in the Arctic and “Russia will ensure its interests in a reliable way.”