Nord Stream 2: preparations underway at Bovanenkovo gas field

Despite the threat of sanctions, preparations are underway in the Russian Arctic for the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to start working, starting with the source that will supply the future pipeline: the Bovanenkovo gas field, on the Yamal peninsula, 400 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle. The energy link between Russia and Germany has sparked concerns about Western Europe’s dependence on Russian gas.

Polar bear caught on CCTV walking into Russian apartment block

A polar bear has been filmed walking into apartments in the Russian Arctic archipelago of Novaya Zemlya, where locals are facing a massive “invasion” of the wild animals. R

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Cousin of jailed Sakharov Prize winner Oleg Sentsov speaks

AFP speaks to the cousin of jailed Ukrainian film director Oleg Sentsov, winner of this year’s Sakharov prize for human rights in October. Sentsov, who recently ended a hunger strike, is serving a 20-year sentence in a prison in the Russian Arctic.

Indigenous Nenets hold annual reindeer race in Russia

More than fifty indigenous Nenets nomads took part in reindeer sled races during the traditional Reindeer Herders Days in the city of Nadym on the Yamal Peninsula. Each contestant made five deer race a distance of 1600 metres, and winners were given snowmobiles. About 40,000 Nenets live in the Russian Arctic region and many work in traditional reindeer herding.