Dealing with ‘Arctic security matters’, therefore, is a good opportunity to carry out a number of parallel and distinct – but ultimately intersecting – types of analysis.
Russia’s central role in shaping the security agenda for the Arctic is beyond doubt, but its posture in this respect has changed significantly – and alarmingly - since the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis in spring 2014. From the middle of
the previous decade, the Kremlin’s Arctic policy had followed a two-pronged strategy: strong emphasis on developing international cooperation on the one hand, and the sustained build-up of military capabilities on the other. Presently,
Russia’s interest in building ties with the Arctic neighbours is on the wane, while the intensity of military activities has reached a new high.