January 31, 2023

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The Russians wanted to build in spy radar

The Russians wanted to build in spy radar

Two Globus radars are located in Norway’s eastern city of Vardø, near the Russian border. It is operated by Norwegian intelligence, but it is well known that Norway works closely with the United States regarding the site.

Radars are very welcome in NATO to gather data from Russia. It is 2.8 miles from the giant range in the east.

It is now known that the Russian Orthodox Church tried to build closer to the important installation, writes Parents Watch.

– Exploits openness

The church is known to be close to Russian officials, military and intelligence. Dagbladet wrote how The Russian Orthodox Church has acquired several properties on the Norwegian coast in recent years.

– The short answer is that the relationship is very close, Professor Paul Kolstow of the University of Oslo previously told Talkblade. He is currently writing a book about the Russian Orthodox Church.

According to BarentsObserver, in 2017 the bishop tried to build a church in the border town. They also received help from the municipality. The indicated site is close to a NATO radar.

This is the reaction of researcher Stal Ulriksen at the Norwegian Naval Academy.

– One has to be very skeptical about allowing the Russian Church to establish itself near critical infrastructure. Unfortunately, the Russians were able to take advantage of the openness in Norway to get this, says Ulriksen at the Naval Academy.

He wanted to build a church

Today’s mayor Ørjan Jensen (MDG) confirms to Dagbladet that there are plans to build a Russian church in the city.

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– A committee in the municipality surveyed a possible plot of land for the construction of a church for the Russian Orthodox Church in Vardo. It was at the Millennium site of Finnmark, which was connected to the extensive trade between northern Norway and Russia before the revolution in 1917. However, nothing has changed in the church.

Saying no: Ørjan Jensen (MDG) Mayor of Vardø.  Having a Russian church in the city after the invasion of Ukraine is out of the question, he says.  Photo: Bjørn Langsem/ Dagbladet

Saying no: Ørjan Jensen (MDG) Mayor of Vardø. Having a Russian church in the city after the invasion of Ukraine is out of the question, he says. Photo: Bjørn Langsem/ Dagbladet
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The plot is located in the heart of Vardo near an important intelligence radar.

Ulriksen at the Norwegian Naval Academy confirms the close ties between the Russian Orthodox Church and says it is often difficult to distinguish between church leaders, the military and intelligence.

– The Russian Orthodox Church has close ties to the regime and military in Russia. It runs schools where children receive military training in uniform. Russians do not distinguish between public and private, or military and civilian, as we do. The church is one of the instruments of the state in Russia.

He pointed to the old parish house the church bought in Tollviken, Bergen, with a full view of the Norwegian Navy’s main base at Håkonsvern, as the “crown example”. Dagbladet has previously mentioned this property purchase.

– Unacceptable

The mayor of Vardo tells Dagbladet that there is no longer any problem with acquiring any buildings belonging to the Russian Church in the city.

– After the invasion of Ukraine, building such a church in the city is completely out of the question. It’s not what we’re working on right now, Jensen insists.

Dogbladet has previously discussed how church buildings can act as a cover for Russian intelligence services.

– If you imagine the whole range of possible activities, you can disrupt signals, maybe listen to signals, you can control drones from there, provide shelter for people mapping the area. There is a wide range of mapping activity and potential disruptions that can be carried out from this type of platform, Alfa Sefland Vinge, who researches critical infrastructure and readiness at the Naval Academy, told Dagbladet regarding Håkonsvern’s case.

Fear among people

The radar at Wardo is known as one of NATO’s strongest cards when it comes to monitoring Russian activity along the alliance’s borders. Russian officials have reacted strongly to the station’s development.

Local people have also in the past Residents expressed concern about safety as they are close to residential areas.

– Many probably worry, and military intelligence globes fear Wardo is too vulnerable. Mayor Ørjan Jensen told Dagbladet in March that fears have not subsided since Russia invaded Ukraine.