The current situation in Ukraine makes cross-border cooperation with the neighboring countries even more important, Barents Secretariat leader Rune Rafaelsen says.(Photo: Atle Staalesen)
The current situation in Ukraine makes cross-border cooperation with the neighboring countries even more important, Barents Secretariat leader Rune Rafaelsen says. At the same time, Norway has joined NATO’s condemnation of Russia’s military escalation on the Crimea peninsula.
“It is more important than ever to continue people-to-people cooperation across the borders”, Rune Rafaelsen says in a comment to the recent days’ development Ukraine. “In the Barents cooperation we are focusing on dialogue and interaction, values that we now are trying to promote in other border areas in Europe, also in Ukraine”.
Rafaelsen recently visited the border area between Slovakia and Ukraine, where the Barents Secretariat is Donor Program Partner for the Norway Grants initiative on cross-border cooperation between the two countries. He met with Ukrainian regional representatives from Uzhgorod to discuss with them the experience from 20 years of successful Norwegian-Russian cooperation in the north.
The Norwegian government has joined NATO’s condemnation of Russia’s military escalation on the Crimea peninsula in Ukraine, the government’s web site reads.
The Russian military activity on Crimea and the threats of further use of military power is a violation of international law. Russia has a heavy responsibility in calming down the tense situation. Russian authorities must immediately meet the Ukrainian request for dialogue to solve the crisis without any use of violence, Norway’s Foreign Minister Børge Brende says.
“Through its military actions and threats of further use of military power, Russia is violating fundamental agreements it has made through the UN Charter, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), The Council of Europe and the NATO-Russian Council, Brende said. “It is an important signal that NATO has expressed full support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.”
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.