An increasing number of the customers to the shops in Ivalo comes from Russia's Kola Peninsula. Photo: Thomas Nilsen(Photo: Thomas Nilsen)
More and more of the parking slots outside this food-store in Ivalo are occupied by Russian cars. Finnish Lapland experienced a 36 percent increase in traffic over Salla and Raja-Joosepi border check-points in 2012.
Finland’s northernmost border check-point to Russia is Raja-Joosepi on the road between Murmansk and Ivalo.
Last year, a record high of 128,054 border-crossings were counted. That is good business for both the shops in Ivalo and for the winter-tourist destination Saariselkä. Early January is peak-season for Russian visitors. With New Year holidays in Russia and New Year’s sales and Santa Claus still active in Lapland, the number of Murmanskers queuing up at the border grows from year-to-year.
At Salla, further south in Lapland, a total of 221,667 border-crossings were counted in 2012, up from 162,647 the previous year. From 2007, the number of border-crossings at Salla has tripled, reads the statistics posted on the portal of the Finnish Border Guard.
Russia’s only aircraft carrier, the Northern Fleet’s “Admiral Kuznetsov”, has finished repairs and is ready to leave the port of Murmansk. According to a Russian news agency, the vessel will sail to Syria.
A century and a half ago, Norway was home to roughly three thousand brown bears, the majority of bears in all of Scandinavia. By 1930, the bears were virtually extinct. Decades of aggressive management tactics and bounties had wiped out one of the area’s most iconic species.
Microplastics, the tiny plastic particles that are accumulating in marine waters and big lakes around the world, are now showing up in the Arctic waters south and southwest of Svalbard, Norway, a new study says.
REYKJAVIK: The climatic changes taking place in the Arctic are a call to action for the world. We must answer with more international cooperation and more research, says Tore Hattrem, State Secretary of Norway’s Foreign Ministry.
“Partnership should and shall shape the development of the Arctic, therefore cooperation is the starting point for our Arctic policy,” Vladimir Barbin, Senior Arctic Official and representative to the Arctic Council, said at the Arctic Circle 2015 assembly.
August 9th, the Barents Region celebrated the UN International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples. The day was commemorated in several parts of the region, including Karasjok in Northern Norway and Teriberka in Northwestern Russia.
Norway’s Foreign Minister Børge Brende has asked Russia for an explanation to the high number of asylum seekers coming to Norway via Russia. Syrian refugees that have lived in Russia for a long time, will be stopped on the border and sent back.