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Lavrov: No Need for NATO Presence in Arctic

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has noticed that Arctic problem doesn't require NATO participation.

Updated 2:29 p.m. Moscow Time

MOSCOW, October 20 (RIA Novosti) – NATO presence in the Arctic Region is unnecessary, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday.

“NATO doctrines and analysis from time to time mentions that the military factor in the Arctic will grow as the struggle for resources intensifies. We are firmly convinced that there is no such problem in the Arctic that would require NATO participation,” he said.

Lavrov added that the Arctic is a "territory of dialogue," and does not have any problems requiring military intervention.

The Arctic is believed to hold vast untapped reserves of oil and gas which have increasingly been at the center of disputes between the United States, Russia, Canada, Norway and Denmark.

In May, NATO former Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that the bloc had no plans to use military forces in the Arctic; however, he stressed that NATO should be prepared to address any arising tensions.

Earlier this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the establishment of a separate public body for the implementation of the Russian policies in the Arctic and a unified network of naval facilities to host advanced warships and submarines in order to boost protection of Russia's interests and borders in the area.

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