Suspicious Drone Briefly Shuts Down Airport

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  • The Norwegian army and state-owned airports operator Avinor were notified after the first drone sighting at Bergen Airport was reported at 4:15 a.m., police spokesman Ørjan Djuvik said.
  • Norway is not a member of the European Union but mirrors its moves.
  • “We do not want anyone to fly this type of craft over important installations in Norway.”

Authorities claim that after locals noticed at least one drone nearby, the airport in Norway’s second-largest city briefly shut down as reported by ABC News.

Airspace shutoff

After the first drone sighting at Bergen Airport was reported at 4:15 in the morning, the Norwegian army and state-owned airports operator Avinor were alerted, according to police spokesman Ørjan Djuvik. Later reports of other sightings were made.

Djuvik added, “There can also be observations that could be other phenomena, like weather.”

“We’re not sure if it’s one or several drones, but we know there’s at least one,” the statement continued.

According to the Norwegian news agency NTB, the airspace was shut off near Bergen Airport because it is close to Norway’s primary naval station. One of the biggest naval military bases in northern Europe is the Haakonsvern facility.

No suspects?

A drone was also spotted close to the small domestic Foerde airport, which was briefly closed, according to NTB, which is located north of Bergen.

No suspects had been named, according to the police. Over the past few weeks, at least seven Russian people have been imprisoned for using drones to fly over or photograph important Norwegian locations.

According to NTB, a 47-year-old man who holds dual citizenship in Russia and the United Kingdom was sentenced to two weeks in prison on suspicion of violating sanctions that were put in place after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by using drones on the Norwegian Arctic archipelago of Svalbard.

No permission

Norwegian legislation forbids Russian-owned or -operated aircraft from “landing on, taking off from, or flying over Norwegian territory.” Despite not being a member of the EU, Norway follows its policies.

“French intelligence using drones to fly over Norwegian airports is unacceptable.” According to Norwegian broadcaster NRK, Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stre declared that “Russians were not permitted to operate drones in Norway. We don’t want anyone to fly this kind of craft over significant Norwegian sites.”

At roughly 6:30 a.m., Bergen Airport was closed; it reopened two and a half hours later. According to the airport’s website, it has 15 gates and is Norway’s second-largest airport, handling more over 6 million people annually.

Suspicious vigilance

Numerous drone sightings have been reported near Norwegian offshore oil and gas platforms and infrastructure in recent weeks.

Airport operator Avinor told NRK on Tuesday that 50 possible drone observations have been reported at civilian airports so far this year, 27 of them since July.

“I would say that it is important that we have vigilance in society for activity that may appear suspicious.

This should be reported to the local police,” she said.

There is heightened security around key energy, internet and power infrastructure following last month’s underwater explosions that ruptured two natural gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea that were built to deliver Russian gas to Germany.

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Source: ABC News

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