- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Members of Greenpeace have boarded and occupied a couple of offshore drilling rigs located in Arctic waters in protest of gas and oil exploration.

Fifteen boarded a rig located about 109 miles from the Bear Island nature reserve, said Juha Aromaa, a spokesman for Greenpeace, The Associated Press reported. The rig’s owned by the Norwegian energy company Statoil — and workers did not try to prevent the Greenpeace members’ occupation, AP reported.

Another 30 or so activists also boarded a rig that’s contracted by the Russian company Gazprom to operate and drill in the Pechora Sea, AP reported. But their occupation there only lasted five hours. Greenpeace activists say they were all removed by authorities for the company, AP reported.

The protest came on the heels of a permit for Statoil to start drilling in the northern area of the Barents Sea. Greenpeace had held up its drilling operations by filing a complaint, AP said.

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