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Containing Russia’s Arctic Presence ‘Imperative’ for US

© Sputnik / Alexander LiskinAn Arctic dawn
An Arctic dawn - Sputnik International
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Successfully containing Russia’s presence in the Arctic region is crucial to the interests of the United States, US Defense Intelligence Agency Director Vincent Stewart told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday.

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NEW YORK (Sputnik) — He also noted the Unite States needs to counter Russia’s intent on building air bases and missile defense capabilities in the Arctic.

"There is, I think, an imperative that we have both the willingness and the capacity to push back on [Russia’s] control or dominance of the Arctic region," Stewart stated.

In July 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin outlined Moscow’s new maritime strategy, which included increasing the existing Russian naval presence in the Atlantic and Arctic oceans.

Russia initiated a request to the United Nations on extending the borders of its continental shelf in the Arctic after showing that the Lomonosov Ridge and other geological regions were an extension of its maritime borders.

The Arctic is considered a major source of hydrocarbons, minerals, fresh water and fish. The region's resources are a matter of interest for states bordering the area as well as Arctic Council members, including Canada, Denmark, Greenland, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

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