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Norway urges US to double Marines on territory closer to Russia

The rotation of forces will last for a five-year period compared with an initial posting that ran for six months from the start of 2017 and then was extended last June.


Reuters Last Updated at 12-06-2018 16:27:13 IST Norway, United States
Norway urges US to double Marines on territory closer to Russia
  • The initial decision to bring Marines to Norway had irked Russia, with whom the country shares a border in the Arctic, which at the time said it would worsen bilateral relations and escalate tensions on NATO's northern flank. (Image Credit: Twitter)

Norway will ask the United States to more than double the number of US Marines stationed on its territory, to stay for longer and to be based in a region that is closer to Russia, the government said on Tuesday.

Some 330 Marines were scheduled to leave at the end of this year after an initial contingent arrived in January 2017, the first foreign troops stationed in the NATO member-state since the end of World War Two.

The initial decision to bring Marines to Norway had irked Russia, with whom the country shares a border in the Arctic, which at the time said it would worsen bilateral relations and escalate tensions on NATO's northern flank.

"We have broad support in parliament for this," Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Soereide told reporters, adding that the move did not constitute the establishment of a permanent US base in Norway and that it was not targeted at Russia.

"There are no American bases on Norwegian soil," she said.

Oslo will ask Washington to send 700 troops from 2019, compared with 330 presently. The additional numbers will be based in the Inner Troms region in the Norwegian Arctic, rather than in central Norway.

The rotation of forces will last for a five-year period compared with an initial posting that ran for six months from the start of 2017 and then was extended last June.

The Russian embassy in Oslo was not available for comment.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Norway United States

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