Recently, Vladimir Putin visited the Arctic Archipelago as part of Russia’s efforts to reaffirm Russia’s claim upon most of the arctic. There was also an “Arctic Forum” held to discuss the geopolitical future of the region.
The arctic is rich in hydrocarbon and mineral resources like gold, copper, uranium, and even diamonds.
As arctic ice sheets continue to break away, the countries bordering the arctic are re-evaluating their arctic interests. Iceland, Norway, Denmark, United States, Russia, and Canada are all claiming regions of the arctic and some of these arctic regions they’re claiming to own overlap.
In addition to that disputed territory, Russia is also claiming the centre of the arctic, by virtue of the Russian Continental Shelf, which even encompasses the North Pole.
No other country has used this argument to claim any land or water outside their protected state-territory.
Russia is claiming to have an exclusive economic zone far beyond what international law normally permits.
It appears that Russia is slowly taking over the Arctic.
So what can be done?
If Canada wants to combat Russia’s influence over the Arctic, we do have to set up bases and settlements. We also have to sit down with them at the negotiation table.
It’s an issue that should concern every Conservative Party leadership candidate.
WATCH to see what one in particular had to say about Russia’s arctic claims.