OREANDA-NEWS  The Pentagon is changing its operational plans in the Arctic to counter the growing influence in the region of Russia and China. This was stated on Tuesday at a hearing in the Committee on the armed forces of the Senate of the US Congress, the commander of the United State Armed Forces (USAF) NATO in Europe, us General Curtis Skaparotti.

"We are now faced with the fact that the Northern sea route remains open longer. And the consequence of this is that the interest in it increases from a commercial point of view and in terms of resources," he said. "China, in particular, is trying to penetrate to the Far North," the General said.

"This creates competition. Russia, since the Northern sea route passes closest to its borders, the newly opened airfields in the region, they now have radar systems, they began periodically to move there in various weapons systems, to control the area," he said Scaparotti. "As a result, we updated our plans: we had to change the deployment of some of our forces, we changed our operational plans so that we could provide deterrence. We send a signal about how important the Arctic is for us," the General said.

In November 2018, the Chairman of the chiefs of staff (CCS) of the US Armed Forces, General Joseph Dunford, expressed the opinion that Russia is expanding its military presence in the Arctic, and the US does not exclude the possibility of turning this region into a conflict zone in the future.

Moscow has consistently rejected the claims of Western politicians to increase its military presence in other regions and about any of its actions, which are allegedly aimed at violating international order.