MOSCOW, June 22. /TASS/. The increased foreign military presence near Russian borders in the Arctic may lead to an escalation in the region, and Russia will respond to attempts to destabilize the situation in the Arctic by reinforcing its armed forces group, Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said Tuesday.
"We register increasing military presence near our borders, aimed at constraining our country," Medvedev said during a meeting on Russian national interests in the Arctic.
According to the official, "such policy is totally unacceptable, because it directly threatens the national security, and can lead to an escalation in the region in general".
"We must continue the work we’ve been doing in the last few years, both on reinforcing the Russian forces group [in the Arctic], and on equipping this group with modern weapons. In any case, this will be an efficient response to foreign countries’ attempts to destabilize the situation in the Arctic and create conditions for anti-Russia provocations," Medvedev said.
"In the last few years, our country significantly expanded its presence in the Arctic: we carry out major economic projects, we create modern infrastructure, we build place for people to live in comfort," Medvedev said.
According to the official, this must be done with consideration of the goal, outlined by President Vladimir Putin - "to preserve the Arctic as a territory of peace, of stable and mutually beneficial partnership".
"Many Arctic and non-Arctic states support this position, and express their interest in the development of a peaceful cooperation in the region," Medvedev underscored.