The Norwegian Ministry of Defense claims that Russia, operating from the Kola Peninsula, interfered with the work of the satellite navigation systems (GPS), which were used by air traffic, during the NATO Trident juncture military exercises.
The Aftenposten newspaper reported that the Norwegian Ministry of Defense sent a statement to the Norwegian Telegraph Bureau (NTB) accusing Russia of causing GPS failures.
“We are monitoring the situation along with other departments concerned. It is known that the MFA earlier raised the issue while contacting Russian authorities,” reads the statement.
The Finnish Prime Minister, Juha Sipila admitted that Russia was behind the failures of the GPS satellite navigation system in Finland during the exercises. According to the Finnish Prime Minister, the purpose of the interference was to demonstrate the ability to do such a thing.
After this, the Russian president’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov stated that the Kremlin has no knowledge of any problems connected with GPS-navigation during the NATO exercises and that Moscow has anything to do with these failures.
The Trident Juncture 18 military exercises were conducted from October 25th to the 7th of November in Norway. Fifty thousand military members from 30 NATO countries and NATO partners, 10 thousand vehicles, 250 aircraft, and 65 vessels were involved. These are the largest NATO exercises since at least 2002, and the largest in Norway’s history.
During the exercises, GPS failures were recorded in the Arctic regions of Finland. Similar failures were also recorded in Norway. In Oslo, this was associated with increased activity of Russia military in the area near the NATO exercises.
On November 4th, Russian anti-submarine warfare aircraft Tu- 142 staged a provocation near the Norwegian shore when without warning they flew right over a ship with NATO marines.