Moscow Considers Military Contacts Between Arctic States Beneficial - Ambassador-at-Large

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Moscow Considers Military Contacts Between Arctic States Beneficial - Ambassador-at-Large

Russia believes that military dialogue between the members of the Arctic Council is useful, given the existing support for an integrated approach both to the development of the Arctic and to security in the region, Nikolai Korchunov, the Russian ambassador-at-large for international Arctic cooperation, told Sputnik

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 08th April, 2019) Russia believes that military dialogue between the members of the Arctic Council is useful, given the existing support for an integrated approach both to the development of the Arctic and to security in the region, Nikolai Korchunov, the Russian ambassador-at-large for international Arctic cooperation, told Sputnik.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Russia's St. Petersburg will host the International Arctic Forum, which serves as a platform for addressing the socioeconomic development of the region and working out multilateral mechanisms for the exploitation of its resources.

"We consider dialogue and contacts between the military of the Arctic states to be beneficial. Since the Arctic Council and the 'Arctic Five,' are formats that primarily concerned with soft security, we, while speaking in favor of an integrated approach to the development of the Arctic region, note, at the same time, the demand for an integrated approach to ensuring the safety of activities and processes occurring in the Arctic region as well," Korchunov said.

The diplomat noted that Russia was already having bilateral military contacts with several Arctic states but added that the issue was not on the agenda of the International Arctic Forum as a separate topic.

At the same time, Korchunov did not rule out that some military aspects could be still touched upon at the gathering.

The forum is expected to be attended by around 300 Russian and 46 foreign businesses, along with the Finnish, Icelandic and Russian leaders, and Norwegian and Swedish prime ministers.

The Arctic Council comprises a total of eight members: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the United States. Unlike the Arctic Council, the so-called Arctic Five does not exist as an organization and is nothing more than a grouping of five countries: Canada, Denmark, Norway, Russia, and the United States.

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