The Ministry of foreign Affairs of Russia has expressed disagreement with the plans of NATO to be held in may in Svalbard event on the lines of the parliamentary Assembly of the Alliance.
«The Russian side proceeds from the fact that all States parties to the Treaty on Spitsbergen of 1920 should be interested in the fact that Svalbard remained an archipelago of peace and good neighborliness,» says the Russian foreign Ministry.
Mead calls forth future action of the Alliance attempt to Annex the Arctic archipelago.
«In the context of the current NATO course on «containment» of Russia, accompanied by unprecedented military preparations near the borders of our country, attempts to pull Svalbard «under the wing» of the military-political bloc and the holding of events under its auspices do not meet the spirit of the Treaty of 1920. I cannot interpret this line differently, as provocative,» — said the foreign Ministry.
The Agency also draws attention to the fact that the agenda of the seminar among others is to discuss the relationship between geopolitics and the future of the Arctic.
«We are convinced that in the Arctic region there are no such problems, which would require NATO involvement and, especially, military recipes. The tension is not the long-term interests of the countries of Northern Europe, weakens rather than strengthens their safety», — reads the statement of the diplomatic Department.
More recently, Vice-Premier of Russia Dmitry Rogozin declared that this region remains almost unique in the world, where Russia and NATO have no reason to oppose.
And now, it seems, and the Arctic becomes «hot». Yet — only in the diplomatic area.
— The event of the Alliance on neutral Svalbard is, of course, the challenge of Russia, test of our reaction, the Dean of the faculty «Sociology and political science» Financial University under the government of the Russian Federation Alexander Shatilov. — «Swallow» or whether we will take appropriate steps. The overall theme of the Arctic is increasingly heard in the military-political aspect, which had not been. Apparently, in the foreseeable future about the Arctic as a territory of peaceful cooperation will have to forget. So now we need to find adequate responses to the challenges of the West in the Arctic.
«SP»: — What are these answers?
— We can strengthen its Arctic military grouping, to organize a military exercise near Spitzbergen. The main thing — not to be idle. As practice shows, the more we «do not notice» the aggressiveness of the West, the bolder against us are.
«SP»: — Norway has long been pursuing a policy of «creeping» squeezing Russia out of the archipelago. Can we expect that, encouraged by the support of NATO, this country will abandon the Treaty of Paris of 1920, providing for a nuclear-free status of Svalbard and the «ask» Russia from there?
— This option is not excluded. Although from 1920, the year the archipelago is the territory of the joint development of Russia and Norway. But, as we have seen time and again in recent years, international treaties are worth little when they are not satisfied with the United States. You can always find some kind of legal conflict, which will eliminate the objectionable Treaty.
«SP»: — We can, for example, in response to the deployment of a NATO base on Svalbard to place its military?
— I think that if there is political will, it can be done. And the West will be powerless to oppose something, if he in the face of Norway was the first break the previous agreement.
— At the moment, NATO and the United States is unlikely to fundamentally change the status of the archipelago, — the Director of the Centre for strategic conjuncture Ivan Konovalov. Since this will create another source of tension. They do not yet have. I think that this «event» thinking in order to «tickle the nerves» of Russia. However, it is clear that the Arctic will soon become, at least in the arena of diplomatic struggle. Therefore, all the external actors in this process trying to «Flex its muscles» to assert his claim.
«SP»: — recently at the Arctic forum in Arkhangelsk, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said that the Arctic is the only area where Russia and NATO are no conflicts. It turns out that now it is not?
— Repeat that until will increase diplomatic confrontation. The United States is too busy with more important regions — the Middle East, Ukraine, the Korean Peninsula. But as soon as will resolve these crises, attention to the Arctic in the world will only increase.
We are strengthening our Arctic troops as well as at the diplomatic level, make statements in the future to have a strong position.
— Although the strategic plan NATO base on the archipelago will not make the weather in the Arctic, but it may cause us some difficulties, says military commentator for TASS, a retired Colonel Viktor Litovkin. For example, missiles «Tomahawk» located on the Islands, unable to reach the bases of the Northern Fleet. «Annexation» Svalbard would mean that NATO decided to interfere in the Russian sector of the Arctic and to complicate our lives. Of course, we cannot tolerate this situation. And by all means: diplomatic and not only to ensure that Svalbard continued to be a demilitarized area. At least, we can say that Norway is annulled the Treaty of 1920, and in response to the placement of NATO bases to deploy its troops in Svalbard in the territory, which belongs to the Russian sector of the archipelago.