Tuesday, 25 Sep, 2007 Science

Russia Could Claim Rights for North Pole Territories in 2009


North PoleArtur Chilingarov, the vice-speaker of the Russian Parliament, said that the Russian Federation might claim its rights for the Lomonosov Ridge on the North Pole. Russia claims to gather all the necessary documentation to prove that The Lomonosov Ridge is a part of the Russian arctic coastal shelf.

Mr. Chilingarov said that in 2008 Russian scientists plan to conduct a series of digs and tests, which are meant to show the exact boundary of the Russian shelf.

The Ministry of Natural Resources of the country said on 20 September that according to reports provided by the expedition "Arctica-2007", the Lomonosov Ridge, along with other territories of this region are parts of the Russian coastal shelf. According to the Ministry representatives, more accurate information will be available in December 2007.

The plan to claim this Northern region is the second attempt of the Russian Federation to enlarge its continental territory to the North. In order to accomplish this goal Russian scientists have already tried to prove the fact that the subcoastal plain of the Arctic Ocean is a continuation of the Siberian coastal platform. In case this fact was proven, Russia would gain control of roughly over 10 million tons of natural resources, which are believed to be found in that territory.

The first attempt to enlarge the territories of the country was already made, yet rejected by the UN as not containing enough proofs. Thus, in order to launch a new campaign and a new claim, Russia launched a scientific program, during which a scientific ship - "Academic Fedorov" - and an ice-breaker - "Rossia" (Russia) - would run a series of tests to prove that the Lomonosov Ridge is, geographically, part of Russia. Those tests included deep seismic scans, collecting specimen from the sea grounds, measuring gravitational nonuniformities, aero-physical survey and using several drifting stations.

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