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Russia’s northernmost air defense base fully combat-ready — Northern Fleet commander

October 19, 2015, 13:46 UTC+3 MURMANSK

Large-scale construction is underway on Alexander Island in Russia’s Arctic Frantz Joseph archipelago to build a modern hi-tech military compound to accommodate units of various arms and services

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© ITAR-TASS/Dmitry Rogulin

MURMANSK, October 19. /TASS/. Air defense units based on Alexander Island in Russia’s northernmost Frantz Joseph archipelago are fully combat-ready, Northern Fleet Commander, Admiral Vladimir Korolyov said on Monday.

"The air defense units on combat duty in Russia’s northernmost point are combat-ready and capable of performing their assigned missions," the Fleet’s press office quoted the commander as saying.

Large-scale construction is underway on the Island to build a modern hi-tech military compound to accommodate units of various arms and services, the Northern Fleet commander said.

"No one has implemented similar projects at such a high latitude until now and the contractor building the compound on the island is fulfilling works ahead of schedule virtually for all facilities," the commander said.

Units of the Northern Fleet’s air defense division went on combat duty on the Alexander Land Island in November 2014. The personnel is currently accommodated at a temporary military cantonment. Combat duty has been organized in the duty shift building constructed in compliance with all the necessary requirements.

Work is currently underway to build a modern closed-cycle administrative and housing building on a total area of over 14,000 square meters.

The construction of military facilities on Alexander Land Island is expected to be completed already in 2016.

The protection of Arctic frontiers has been included in the list of the Russian Armed Force’s tasks since 2014. Russia has also established a united strategic command for the North.

Head of the National Defense Control Center Mikhail Mizintsev has said Russia will build 13 aerodromes, one aviation training range and 10 technical positions of radar units and aviation guidance points in the Arctic.

The Russian Defense Ministry has formed military groupings on the Novaya Zemlya archipelago, the Frantz Joseph Land Islands, the New Siberian archipelago, Wrangel Island and Cape Schmidt and has started to create seven aerodromes in Yakutia, Taimyr and Chukotka.

The army groupings have received the status of the fifth military district in Russia whose area of responsibility also includes the Northern Pole.

Russia is set to build six military cantonments in the Arctic along the western part of the Northern Sea Route. The projects are under way on the Alexander Land Island, the village of Rogachyovo on the Novaya Zemlya archipelago, the Sredny Island on the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago, Cape Schmidt and the Wrangel Island in Chukotka and on the Kotelny Island on the New Siberian archipelago.

A total of 57,700 tons of construction materials were delivered to these areas in the first half of this year and another 24,200 tons are ready for dispatch.

The Russian Arctic is protected by the advanced S-400 air defense missile system and the Pantsir-S1 missile and gun complexes. Deputy Commander of the 1st air defense division Sergey Denisov has said a radar unit has been deployed in the village of Rogachyovo on the Novaya Zemlya archipelago and an antiaircraft missile regiment will be established there. A radar unit will also be deployed on Sredny Island.

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