The Russian Ambassador to Canada, Alexander Darchiev, has given a brief speech about Russia and Canada roles in the Arctic. Since the annexation of Crimea and military support for pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine the relations between the two countries have been "frozen", as so much that Canada has suspended all but the most low-level discussions with Russia. Despite that, Russia has announced that a high-level delegation from Russia will attend the Arctic Council meeting in Iqaluit, when Canada will hand over its chairmanship of Arctic Council to US.
The new appointed ambassador Darchiev has stated that both Canada and Russia are Arctic Power, and since both are part of the "Arctic 5" they bear special responsibilities an rights to explore and develop the Arctic region. Because the area is of special interest of both countries, the ambassador underlined the need to have bilateral and multilateral relations, and to cooperate very closely on common issues. The ambassador added in an interview with a Canadian news, "the Citizen" that "My best hope is we will have a fruitful discussion, not only on Arctic matters, but on our bilateral relations as well" and " I think this would be a good chance to find ways on to how to make our dialogue much more intensive than it is now."
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