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Home* News and Stories → Vio­la­ti­on of sanc­tions found by Nor­we­gi­an cus­toms in Sval­bard

Vio­la­ti­on of sanc­tions found by Nor­we­gi­an cus­toms in Sval­bard

After the begin­ning of the lar­ge-sca­le Rus­si­an inva­si­on of the Ukrai­ne in Febru­ary 2022, Nor­we­gi­an cus­toms offi­cers were soon sta­tio­ned in Lon­gye­ar­by­en. This was done becau­se it was feared that Spits­ber­gen could be used to bypass sanc­tions against Rus­sia. The­re is ship and airtraf­fic bet­ween both Rus­sia and wes­tern count­ries and Spits­ber­gen, but no pre­sence of cus­tom aut­ho­ri­ties – until April 2022, when Nor­we­gi­an cus­toms were estab­lished in Lon­gye­ar­by­en.

Custom controls Spitsbergen: airport Longyearbyen

Lug­ga­ge in the air­port of Lon­gye­ar­by­en: in ear­lier times, only the polar bear kept a watchful eye. Today, Nor­we­gi­an cus­tom offi­cers are doing that.

Still, cus­tom aut­ho­ri­ties are not (yet) too visi­ble at Lon­gye­ar­by­en air­port, but they are the­re and they do, for exam­p­le con­trols, sam­ple tests with drug snif­fer dogs. Next to good rele­vant for the sanc­tion regime, ille­gal drugs are an issue the cus­tom aut­ho­ri­ty wants to work on.

But the air­port is not the only place for the Nor­we­gi­an cus­tom offi­cers. The port, Barents­burg and ships in the 12 mile zone may and do get offi­ci­al visits, often with logi­sti­cal sup­port from the Sys­sel­mes­ter or the coast guard.

During such con­trols, offi­cers found evi­dence for vio­la­ti­on of sanc­tions against Rus­sia, as Sval­bard­pos­ten wro­te.

Fur­ther details, inclu­ding what was found and whe­re and when, were not released.

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last modification: 2023-06-15 · copyright: Rolf Stange
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