MOSCOW, August 1 (RIA Novosti) – A permanent presence of Russian airborne troops in the Arctic is not on the table so far, airborne troops commander Col. Gen. Vladimir Shamanov said on Friday.
“Will we live there [in the Arctic] on a permanent basis? It has not been planned so far,” Shamanov stressed, adding that the present aim of the airborne troops in the region will be to ensure the protection of national interests.
Over the past few years, Russia has been pressing ahead with efforts aimed at the development of its northern territories, including hydrocarbon production and development of the Northern Sea Route, which is gaining traction as an alternative to traditional routes from Europe to Asia.
A series of measures, including those of a military nature, have been taken to protect Russia’s interests in the Arctic amid NATO’s increased focus on the region.
Analysts estimate it may take Russia up to seven years to trigger off its Arctic exploration effort to what it was during its golden era in the 1930s and 1940s.