According to the official representative of the department, Maria Zakharova, Moscow hopes that Western partners will show good sense and return to constructive interaction in the Arctic Council
The refusal of Western countries that are members of the Arctic Council to participate in the activities of the working bodies of this organization because of the situation in Ukraine is politicized and irrational. This is stated in the commentary of the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, said on Friday.
"Such a politicized and clearly irrational statement makes it difficult for joint work as part of the council to develop regional cooperation in the interests of all residents of the Arctic, including indigenous peoples, to ensure sustainable socio-economic development of the region, adapt life to climate change, implement programs to study and protect the environment, as well as joint actions in the sphere of biodiversity conservation," Zakharova said, commenting on the corresponding statement of a number of countries.
"This area of international cooperation has never been hostage to the geopolitical situation. It turns out that the desire of a number of countries to 'punish' Russia will result in serious costs for the joint search for optimal solutions to urgent Arctic problems," the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry added.
At the same time, Russia, which chairs the Arctic Council, will continue to work on the implementation of its program, Zakharova stressed. "The Russian Chairmanship of the Arctic Council hopes that our partners will show good sense and return to constructive interaction within the council," the commentary says.
The day before, all the countries of the Arctic Council, except Russia, issued a written statement in which they refused to take part in the meetings held under the chairmanship of the Russian Federation and on its territory.
The Arctic Council is an intergovernmental organization of the Arctic states. Its members are Denmark (together with Greenland and the Faroe Islands), Iceland, Canada, Norway, USA, Finland, Sweden and Russia. In 2021, the year of the 25th anniversary of the association, the two-year chairmanship in it passed from Iceland to Russia.