An international Arctic forum due to open in Moscow next week should be staged regularly, a Russian explorer who serves as the president's special envoy on the Arctic and Antarctic said on Thursday.
The forum, entitled "The Arctic: Territory of Dialogue," was initially scheduled for April 2010, but had to be postponed following the eruption of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano in Iceland, which prevented many international participants from coming to Moscow.
The Russian Geographical Society will host the Arctic forum in Moscow on September 22-23. The forum will gather world's leading ecologists, experts and politicians to discuss the social, economic and environmental issues affecting the region.
"The forum will be substantive, and I hope it will be held regularly, perhaps once every two years," State Duma Deputy Artur Chilingarov said.
"There should be only understanding and mutual assistance in the Arctic. The forum, which brings scientists together, will help this," the well-known polar explorer said.
He also emphasized, that Russia and Canada should resolve their dispute over the Lomonosov Ridge in the Arctic Ocean based on scientific data.
The Lomonosov Ridge was discovered by Soviet explorers in 1948. The ridge stretches some 1,800 kilometers from the New Siberian Islands over the central part of the ocean to Ellesmere Island of the Canadian Arctic islands.
"Forum participants will discuss new opportunities for global cooperation to establish the Arctic as a space for peace and cooperation. The forum will focus on the challenges of climate change, the effects of human activity, issues concerning natural resources and ways to ensure sustainable development in the Arctic region," the forum organizing committee said on its website.
The forum will be attended by renowned Russian and international scientists, NGOs, businesspeople and policymakers. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who heads the Russian Geographical Society Board of Trustees, is expected to attend, and Icelandic President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson and Prince Albert of Monaco are expected to deliver speeches as guests of honor.
MOSCOW, September 16 (RIA Novosti)