A document released by the Russian government suggests that the country should prepare for war in the Arctic within the next decade, as rising temperatures intensify the scramble for the region's vast oil and gas fields. Russia claims sovereignty over a 465,000-square-mile ridge, which the US and other northern countries dispute. "It cannot be ruled out that military force could be used to resolve emerging problems," the report warned.
In the past Russia has insisted that it is not "militarizing the Arctic," but recently ministers have criticized NATO countries for activities there, and in 2007 a mini-submarine planted a Russian flag on the Arctic seabed. The document, which outlines Russia's new national security strategy and was approved by Dmitry Medvedev, also warned that Russia and China could clash over energy resources in Central Asia.