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Arctic region is getting more importance: Ashton Carter

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In 2013, US President Barack Obama said the Arctic was “peaceful, stable, and free of conflict” as he laid out a national strategy for the region.

But just two years later, the rapid retreat of ocean ice cover, a newly emboldened Russia and the covetous gaze of nations keen to exploit new shipping lanes and vast mineral wealth are putting the Arctic’s longstanding stability under pressure.

“The Arctic is a region that is getting more and more important,” US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said Friday as he visited troops at Fort Wainwright in the Alaskan city of Fairbanks, about 320 kilometers south of the Arctic Circle.

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