The Marine Corps’ rotations to Norway could more than double now that the Norwegian government has authorized up to 700 Marines to train at two locations in the country, officials said.
- Since January 2017, the Corps has sent about 300 Marines on six-month training rotations to Norway, during which they learned from Norwegian troops how to live, fight, and survive in the arctic cold – in Russia’s backyard.
- The Norwegian defense ministry announced on Monday that the Marine Corps can send a larger contingent of Marines, which can continue to train at Vaernes as well as a new location in Troms, said 1st Lt. Brett E. Lazaroff, a spokesman for U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe & Africa. The Norwegian government also allowed the Marine rotations to continue for five more years.
- The size of the next Marine Corps rotation to Norway has not been determined yet, Lazaroff told Task & Purpose on Monday: “We’re in continued staff talks with the Norwegians as we determine how this is going to work and what exactly we’re going to do."
- Russia has expressed anger about the Marines training roughly 200 miles from its border with Norway. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Norwegian media in 2016 that the Marine rotations “certainly will not improve relations.”