Iceland | Unprecedented approval to refuel US nuclear submarines
Defence Redefined
Published on 20/04/2023 at 11:21

Iceland approved last Tuesday, for the first time, to refuel US nuclear submarines off its coast, facilitating in this way the surveillance of the North Atlantic, a contact zone with Russian submarines.

Although a NATO member-state, the small Nordic country has not allowed such visits so far, in the name of its opposition to nuclear energy and nuclear weapons.

This decision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is part of the Icelandic government policy to support allied surveillance and response capability in the North Atlantic, the government said in a statement.

However, the refueling will not take place in ports, but several kilometers out in the open, while another condition is that the submarines that will be refueled will not carry nuclear weapons, at least according to Reykjavik.

The first submarine will make a refueling visit in the near future, the Icelandic government said.

The Atlantic Sea area around Iceland is considered strategically important for submarines, both Russian ones sailing from the Barents Sea and Western ones sailing into the North Sea or coming from the US.

The country of 370,000 inhabitants has been a founding member of NATO since 1949, but stands out from the others as it has no Armed Forces. It has only one coast guard unit.

Also read: Netherlands | Host of €1 billion NATO fund




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