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Russia wants to extend right up to the North Pole the territory it controls in the Arctic, believed to hold vast reserves of untapped oil and natural gas, which is expected to become more accessible as climate change melts the ice.
Russian explorers dived deep below the North Pole in a submersible overnight and planted their national flag on the seabed to stake a symbolic claim to the energy riches of the Arctic.
A mechanical arm dropped a specially made, rust-proof titanium flag painted with the Russian tricolour onto the Arctic seabed at a depth of 4261 metres.