Moscow says Norwegian government blockade of supplies to miners is ‘unacceptable’
Sputnik – Moscow considers it “unacceptable” by the Norwegian government to stop supplies to miners.
Moscow has summoned Norway’s foreign affairs chief Solvig Rosebo to explain an “unacceptable” ban on supplying supplies for a Russian Arctic mining operation.
The enterprise, operating on the Svalbard archipelago, was unable to obtain “critical” goods, including food, medical equipment, building materials and spare parts.
Russia’s foreign ministry has promised “appropriate retaliation” if the issue is not resolved.
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The blockade left miners working in the city of Barentsburg without food, which Russia called a human rights violation.
Moscow also protested that such behavior was in violation of the Treaty of Svalbard, signed in 1920, which established Norwegian rule over the islands, but also established the right of the signatories, including Russia, to exploit their own resources.
In late April, the Norwegian government announced that it would ban road transport for Russian operators from 7 May and close its ports to Russian ships.
However, the archipelago escaped sanctions due to the Treaty of Svalbard, which was also signed by the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Denmark, among other countries.
In recent months, the Kremlin has shown great interest in exploring the region’s rich Arctic deposits, which worries countries such as the United States and Canada.
This month, Moscow also accused Lithuania of violating international law by suspending the transit of approved goods through the Kaliningrad region.
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