00:45 GMT +322 August 2017
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    One of Russia's largest Soviet-built nuclear submarines, Typhoon (Akula) class, which remains the world's largest with the displacement of about 25,000 metric tons (27,500 tons) heaves ahead in the Barents Sea at Russia's Arctic Coast in this September 2001 photo

    Russia to Take Steps to Bolster Military Groups in Country's West, Arctic

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    Russia will take measures in 2017 to bolster its military groups in the west and southwest of the country, as well as in the Arctic, Russian Defense Minister Shoigu said on Thursday.

    Pantsir-S1 Air Defense Missile/Gun System
    © Sputnik/ Sergey Subbotin
    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – In the Arctic region, Russia has already deployed air defense missile and artillery systems.

    "In 2017, the ministry has to resolve a number of priority issues. First of all, to continue strengthening combat capabilities of the armed forces, take steps to bolster groups in the western, southwestern and the Arctic strategic directions," Shoigu said.

    In the past few years Russia has been actively developing its northern territories, engaging in oil and gas extraction, and exploring the Northern Sea Route, which is now seen as an alternative to traditional links between Europe and Asia.

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    Sergei Shoigu, Arctic, Russia
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