The Norwegian Government is increasing preparedness and controls along the Norwegian-Russian border

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The mobilisation in Russia and the possibility that Russian citizens may not be allowed to leave the country increases the risk of illegal border crossing along the Norwegian-Russian border outside the border crossing-point in Storskog. A police helicopter with sensors will be stationed at Finnmark police district on Friday to increase preparedness.

The Norwegian Armed Forces’ garrison in Sør-Varanger is monitoring the border with Russia. The police helicopter will increase the capacity to detect any illegal border crossings. The border with Russia is 198 km long, and mostly runs along the Pasvik river.

‘The police is in control of the situation at Storskog, and we are now increasing the police presence in the border area also outside the border station. The police helicopter is a useful tool for monitoring the border from the Norwegian side of the border,’ says Minister of Justice and Public Security Emilie Enger Mehl.

The Norwegian Government tightened its visa rules for Russians in May, and tourist visas generally have not been granted to Russians since then. The Norwegian Government is ready to tighten measures in the same way as Finland is doing at present but is waiting to see whether these measures will be implemented. Finland's measures along the borders are based on foreign policy considerations after tens of thousands of Russian citizens arrived in a short period of time.

‘We will quickly close the border if this becomes necessary, and changes may be made at short notice. Few people have arrived in Norway, compared with Finland, and the situation is different here. Storskog is our only border crossing-point with Russia. We are in close dialogue with the police and Norwegian Customs regarding the situation at the border, and will perform thorough border controls of all arrivals,’ says Minister of Justice and Public Security Emilie Enger Mehl.