01:48 GMT20 September 2020
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    US head of Northern Command and Commander of NORAD Admiral William Gortney said that the Arctic has already been militarized by both the United States and Russia as an area of mutual strategic interest.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Arctic has already been militarized by both the United States and Russia as an area of mutual strategic interest, US head of Northern Command and Commander of the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD) Admiral William Gortney said.

    "I think we already have militarized the Arctic," Gortney stated at the Atlantic Council on Wednesday.

    Responding to a question on Russian military activity in the region, Gortney said the issue of militarizing the Arctic "is a moot point."

    An Arctic dawn
    © Sputnik / Alexander Liskin
    Gortney, who is also the Department of Defense’s chief advocate for the Arctic, noted that both the United States and Russia have ballistic missile submarines already patrolling the Arctic.

    It is possible, however, for the Arctic became a "flash point" of conflict, Gortney said.

    NORAD is tasked with controlling the aerospace warning systems to defend the North American continent. The warning system includes detection and validation of attacks by aircraft and missiles from space.

    Northern Command is charged with overseeing land, air and sea-based security with other national partners on the North American continent.


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    militarization, North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), Arctic, Russia, United States
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