Russian Arctic Claims Comply With Int'l Law of the Sea - State Dep't

© Sputnik / Sergey Mamontov / Go to the mediabankOpening the North Pole 2015 drifting station in the Arctic Ocean
Opening the North Pole 2015 drifting station in the Arctic Ocean - Sputnik International
Russia’s submission of new territorial claims in the Arctic is fully consistent with international law, US State Department Representative to the Arctic Admiral Robert Papp told reporters.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — On August 3, 2015, Russia reapplied for an expansion of its continental shelf in the Arctic to include a total underwater space covering 1.2 million square km.

"The United States believes that Russia has complied with the Law of the Sea Treaty and is doing everything that it is supposed to do," Papp said on Tuesday of new Arctic territorial claims submitted by Russia to the United Nations.

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Responding to a question from Sputnik, Papp described a number of US media stories discussing Russia’s fresh submission as "deplorable," saying that they "misrepresent what is going on."

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A number of US media reports described Russia’s fresh Arctic shelf bid as expansionism, and an attempt to gain control of the region’s untapped oil and natural gas resources.

"Rhetoric is never helpful," Papp said of exaggerated media reports.

The Russian Foreign Ministry anticipates an expedited review of their application by the UN, which the Ministry says could be completed as soon as autumn 2015.

Russia initially submitted its claim to the UN in 2002, but revised the submission based on extensive scientific data it had gathered since.

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