MOSCOW, December 11. /TASS/. Russia currently sees no challenges in the Arctic that could require the use of military force, Northern Fleet Chief of Staff Vice-Admiral Vladimir Grishechkin said at the 10th international Arctic forum, Arctic: Today and the Future, in St. Petersburg on Friday.
"At the international level, the Russian Federation stands for interaction and mutually complementing efforts of the states in polar latitudes, developing international partnership in the interests of preserving the Arctic region as a zone of peace, stability and low military tension. At present, there are no challenges in the Arctic that require the use of military force," the Northern Fleet’s press office quoted the vice-admiral as saying.
In his speech at the forum, the Northern Fleet chief of staff analyzed in detail the activity of the US and NATO navies in the Arctic region. The vice-admiral pointed to the greater intensity and the larger scope of operational and combat training measures of NATO’s allied forces in the region, noting that this activity had moved closer to Russian borders.
Meanwhile, "the Northern Fleet is operating in line with the general concept of the Russian Armed Forces’ development and in strict compliance with the Defense Ministry’s plans," he said.
As an adequate response to NATO’s growing combat potential in the Arctic, the Northern Fleet is receiving advanced armament, including nuclear-powered underwater cruisers with cruise missiles, frigates, amphibious assault ships, coastal air defense systems, anti-submarine warfare aircraft and support vessels of various designation, the vice-admiral said.
In 2020, the second next-generation Project Borei-A nuclear-powered submarine Knyaz Vladimir armed with Bulava ballistic missiles entered service with the Northern Fleet, he said.
Considering its designation, the Northern Fleet’s grouping is on constant alert for accomplishing the tasks of deterring any aggression against Russia, the vice-admiral said.
"This armament is primarily considered as a deterrence weapon, a guarantor of strategic stability in the world," he stressed.
In his report, the Northern Fleet chief of staff also said that "as part of implementing Russia’s state policy in the Arctic and fulfilling the president’s instructions, measures are stipulated to develop the port infrastructure of the coastline of Arctic seas, which will enable the Northern Fleet’s forces to promptly respond to possible threats to the security of shipping along the entire Northern Sea Route."
The vice-admiral also outlined the issues of the Northern Fleet’s participation in the social and economic life of the Arctic region, environmental protection, ecological safety, expeditionary activity and the development of international cooperation.