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The Russian Continental Shelf Beyond The 200-Mile Zone In The Arctic Ocean

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Chapter Summary

The Arctic seabed and subsoil are important because they contain, according to an estimate by American experts, around 25% of the world's remaining reserves of oil and gas. In October 1995, Russia passed a federal law where the continental shelf and the continental margin in the Arctic and the Pacific were defined as the prolongation of continental masses of the Russian Federation. In August 2007, two mini submarines of the Russian Federation descended to the Arctic Ocean seabed. By submerging the Russian submarines onto the Arctic subsoil in the vicinity of the North Pole, and taking samples thereof, the Russian Federation obviously wanted to substantiate its claims for the verification of the outer limits of its continental shelf beyond the 200-mile zone, because such a validated boundary would enable it to realise its sovereign rights concerning the exploitation of mineral resources in the wide Arctic and Pacific area.

Keywords: Arctic Ocean; Russian continental shelf

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