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20:05 GMT +3 hours22 December 2014
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Russian Arctic Expedition Finds New Island

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A Russian Arctic expedition has discovered a new island in the Franz Josef Land archipelago.

A Russian Arctic expedition has discovered a new island in the Franz Josef Land archipelago.

Arctic explorers first hypothesized that the new island could have split away from larger Northbrook Island back in 2006 but bad weather prevented a previous expedition from finding proof.

The Arctic-2012 expedition, which set off from Murmansk on Saturday on board the Rossiya nuclear icebreaker, took photographs of the new strait that has formed between the two islands and fixed the coordinates of the coastline.

“We proved that a new strait has formed in the Arctic Ocean and the Franz Josef Land archipelago has got a new island,” expedition chief Vladimir Sokolov said.

The expedition will hand over the data on the new island to the Navigation and Oceanography department in St. Petersburg and a special governmental commission will later name the island, he added.

The Franz Josef Land archipelago consists of 191 ice-covered islands with a total area of 16,134 square kilometers (6,229 square miles).