Russia is planning to arm its Northern Fleet's Arctic division with S-400 air defence system. A Russian naval commander on Monday said that Russia will create an air defence "dome" across its polar region to prevent an enemy aerial attack of any kind. Senior Russian military personnel said that the country is planning to deploy similar missile systems at all of their Arctic divisions to create an effective air defence dome in the Russian part of the region.
Reportedly, Russia's growing presence in the Arctic is aimed at untapped minerals and other natural resources in the region. Russia is building new infrastructure and overhauling its ports to claim its dominance in the northernmost part of the world. According to international report, the Arctic could soon become a site for another cold war between the superpowers of the world as the United States is regularly complaining about Russia and China's actions in the region.
Russia's recent move is being closely watched by Washington as the United States is also a member of the Arctic Council. In July this year, US State Secretary Mike Pompeo acknowledged Russia's expanding military presence in the Arctic and expressed concern over aggressive Russian behaviour in the region. Similarly, in April this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin also complained about NATO's largest military exercise in the Arctic and said that Russia's aviation activity in the Baltic Sea Zone was of lower magnitude than the activity of NATO.
China has started increasing its presence in the region after it was made an observer state to the Arctic Council in 2013, alongside India, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Italy. There are eight member states that constitutes the Arctic Council - Canada, United States, Russia, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The Arctic Council is a governmental organiation that was formed in 1996 to address the issues faced by the Arctic governments and the people of the region.