High season for military activities in the High North


Hopefully, the Sevmorput will be kind to this tricky transportation.

The new round of US and EU sanctions targets very specifically exploration projects in the Arctic, so both Exxon-Mobil and Statoil announce postponements and cancellations in their respective partnership plans with Rosneft. The Western majors hardly have ay regrets about it – doing business in Russia in general, and with Rosneft in particular, becomes bad for business and damaging for reputation. Russian counter-sanctions include deployment of OMON special units into the IKEA shop outside Moscow. As far as the Arctic is concerned, there is the seasonal peak of military activities, including the voyage of the Northern Fleet ships along the Northern Sea Route, which is not having an ice-free year. What is new this year is the experiment with transporting two nuclear submarines from the Far East to Murmansk. The two submarines in question (both Akula-class, project 971, one built in 1989, another – in 1995) were waiting repairs for a number of years, and now the order was issued to load them on a huge transport ship and bring along the Sevmorput to the Zvezdochka plant near Murmansk.

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