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Greenpeace challenges Statoil's plans to develop oil near Arctic island

May 27, 2014, 13:16 UTC+3 STOCKHOLM

Greenpeace protesters said they have enough water and food to stay on board the oil platform for several days

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© Greenpeace/TASS TV

STOCKHOLM, May 27. /ITAR-TASS/. Greenpeace activists from eight countries have gone aboard the Norwegian oil developing platform Transocean Spitsbergen, owned by the Statoil company, to protest against Statoil's plans to develop an oil deposit near Medvezhy (Bear) island in the Norwegian Arctic zone, Greenpeace said in a press release which came to ITAR-TASS. At present, the Statoil platform has been staying at a distance of 175 kilometers from a nature reserve on Medvezhy island.

The Norwegian company Statoil intends to launch oil development near the Medvezhy island famous for rich variety of bird population. Any oil leak in this area is fraught with an ecological catastrophe. Dozens of thousands of people in Norway have already sent letters of protest to the government of Norway in a bid to thwart these plans. On behalf of all these people the Greenpeace has been holding a protest act to defend the Arctic territory, said 23-year-old Greenpeace activist Rosanna Andre from Stockholm.

Greenpeace protesters said they have enough water and food to stay on board the oil platform for several days. A ship, which brought the Greenpeace protesters to the area of the Norwegian oil platform, has been drifting nearby.

May 23, the Norwegian Environment Agency decided to postpone oil development in the Arctic zone pending results of an investigation into the Greenpeace complaint lodged with the Agency. The Greenpeace said in its complaint that the Statoil company had violated a ban imposed in Norway on oil prospecting in Arctic conditions and in the vicinity of a zone of Arctic ice.

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