Russian military plants a flag on the nation’s northernmost point

It's the third flag of its kind placed on the Franz Josef Land archipelago.

By Atle Staalesen, The Independent Barents Observer - September 11, 2019

A military expedition has installed a Russian flag on Cape Fligeli, the northernmost piece of land in the Russian Arctic.

Located at 81.5 degrees North, on Rudolf Island, Cape Fligeli is at the tip of the the remote Franz Josef Land archipelago. North of the cape is nothing but Arctic waters.

The flag was raised during a military expedition earlier this month. It is the third flag of the kind installed in the archipelago as part of the Northern Fleet’s so-called historical-patriotic expedition to the area.

“In the current time period, the erection of the Russian flag on Franz Josef Land by sailors from the Northern Fleet symbolizes Russia’s aspiration towards peaceful exploration and development of the Arctic,” the Russian Armed Forces said.

The expedition named “Three Flags over the Archipelago” was organized to mark the 145-year anniversary since the discovery of the island. Austrian explorer Julius von Payer in 1874 discovered the island that later was named the Rudolf Island.

The expedition was a joint initiative of the Navy and the Russian Geographical Society. It took place under very difficult weather conditions, according to the Northern Fleet.

The flag is not the only symbolic installation on Rudolf Island. In 2003, Russian Orthodox pilgrims planted a 300-kilogram cross made of larch wood there.