As Russia presses claims to the North Pole, Canada is stepping up its defense of its Arctic territory and will no longer take its sovereignty "too lighty," PM Stephen Harper declared yesterday during an Arctic tour. Canada is building six patrol vessels to guard the icy territory where Russia planted a flag in the seabed last week, the BBC reports.
The five countries bordering the Arctic have jurisdiction over 200 miles of territorial waters, though can claim more if they prove their continental shelves link to the Arctic seabed.The disputed area is not owned by any single country but is governed by international agreements. Melting polar ice has spurred a flurry of competing claims over access to Arctic resources. (Read more Canada stories.)