Sport has an important place in the people-to-people cooperation in the Barents Region. International sports activities involve many participants and contribute to remove political, social and cultural barriers.
Many different sports have annual competitions for the region’s best athletes. This weekend Lakselv in Finnmark, Norway, hosted the Barents Swim Meet 2013 with participation of teams from Norway, Russia and Finland.
The competition gathered some 50 young swimmers, many of them among the best of their age group in their respective home countries.
The final results showed that the Norwegian team won by only two points over Finland, followed by Russia on third place. The Finnish team took 12 first places, the Norwegian 10 and the Russian team 2.
Finland defeated the other two countries at both the men’s relays – 4x100 medley and 4x200 freestyle, while Norway took the victory in both the women’s relays – 4x 100 medley and 4x100 freestyle.
Russia plans to resume testing of the submarine-launched ballistic missile Bulava this summer. The country’s two newest strategic nuclear-powered submarines will start trials as soon as the ice conditions in the White Sea will allow.
MURMANSK: Ecological groups gathered on Kola Peninsula fear that Barents nature will be the looser after Oslo decided to call off the environmental minister’s Moscow meeting in response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
TROMSØ: Since the first five specimens of snow crab were found in the Barents Sea in 1996, the population has exploded. There is now ten times as much snow crab than king crab in the area, and scientists are just starting to find out how this new species has adopted to life in the Barents Sea.
More than 900 reindeer die of hunger on the Russian Arctic island of Kolguyev following a critical lack of available local pasturelands. The reindeer stocks in the area are too badly managed, regional authorities admit.
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.
Board member Amund Trellevik in the press network fears entry-denial of Kremlin’s controversial propaganda-journalist Dmitry Kiselyov could be retaliated by refusing Norwegian journalists access to Russia.