Russian Arctic islands

Satellite image

The Russian Arctic islands are a number of islands groups and sole islands scattered around the Arctic Ocean.


The islands are all situated within the Arctic Circle and are scattered through the marginal seas of the Arctic Ocean, namely, the Barents Sea, Kara Sea, Laptev Sea, East Siberian Sea, Chukchi Sea and Bering Sea. The area extends some 7,000 kilometres (4,300 miles) from Karelia in the west to the Chukchi Peninsula in the east.[1]

The largest of the Arctic islands is Severny Island, with an area of about 48,904 km2 (18,882 sq mi). It is Russia's second largest island next to Sakhalin Island, and the fourth largest island in Europe.


The Russian Empire officially claimed the Arctic islands to its north in a Note of the Russian Government of 20 September 1916 - this covered the islands of Henrietta, Jeannette, Bennett, Herald, Edinenie, New Siberia, Wrangel, Novaya Zemlya, Kolguev, Vaigach and others.[2] On 15 April 1926, the Soviet Union reaffirmed this claim.[2]


The area includes from west to east:[1][3]

  • Victoria Island (Остров Виктория; Ostrov Viktoriya), about 14 km2 (5.4 sq mi)
  • Franz Josef Land (Земля Франца Иосифа; Zemlya Frantsa-Iosifa), about 16,134 km2 (6,229 sq mi)
    • Zemlya Georga (Земля Георга, Zemlya Georga), about 2,821 km2 (1,089 sq mi)
    • Wilczek Land (Земля Вильчека; Zemlya Vil'cheka), about 2,203 km2 (851 sq mi)
    • Graham Bell Island, (Остров Греэм-Белл, Ostrov Graham Bell), about 1,557 km2 (601 sq mi)
    • Alexandra Land (Земля Александры, Zemlya Aleksandry), about 1,130 km2 (440 sq mi)
    • Gallya (Остров Галля, Ostrov Gallya), about 1,049 km2 (405 sq mi)
    • Salisbury Island (Остров Солсбери; Ostrov Solsberi), about 960 km2 (370 sq mi)
  • Kolguyev Island (о́стров Колгу́ев, Ostrov Kolguev), about 3,497 km2 (1,350 sq mi)
  • Novaya Zemlya (Новая Земля, Novaya Zemlya), about 90,605 km2 (34,983 sq mi)
    • Severny Island (остров Сeверный, Severny ostrov), about 48,904 km2 (18,882 sq mi)
    • Yuzhny Island ( Южный остров, Yuzhny ostrov), about 33,275 km2 (12,848 sq mi)
    • Vaygach Island, Вайгaч, Vaygach), about 3,398 km2 (1,312 sq mi)
  • Bely Island, (Остров Белый, Ostrov Beliy), about 1,810 km2 (700 sq mi)
  • Shokalsky Island, (Остров Шокальского, Ostrov Shokal'skogo), about 428 km2 (165 sq mi)
  • Vilkitsky Island (Kara Sea), (Остров Вильки́цкого; Ostrov Vil'kitskogo), about 154 km2 (59 sq mi)
  • Oleniy Island, (Остров Олений, Ostrov Oleniy), about 1,197 km2 (462 sq mi)
  • Zapovednik Islands (Острова Заповедник), about 4,921 km2 (1,900 sq mi)
    • Dikson - Sibiryakov Islands, (Диксон-Сибиряковский острова), about 871 km2 (336 sq mi)
    • The Kara Sea Islands, (Острова Карского моря), about 4,000 km2 (1,500 sq mi)
    • Nordenskiöld Archipelago (Архипелаг Норденшельда, Arkhipelag Nordenshel'da), about 50 km2 (19 sq mi)
      • Litke Islands (острова Литке; Ostrova Litke)
      • Tsivolko Islands (острова Циволько; Ostrova Tsivolko)
      • Pakhatusov Islands (острова Пахтусова; Ostrova Pakhtusova)
      • Vostochnyye Islands (Восточные острова; Ostrova Vostochnyye, Eastern Islands)
      • Vilkitsky Islands (острова Вилькицкого, Ostrova Vilkitskogo)
      • Lafetenyye and Prolifnyye Islands (Ostrova Lafetnyye i Prolivnyye)
  • Vize Island (Остров Визе, Ostrov Vize), about 289 km2 (112 sq mi)
  • Ushakov Island (Остров Ушакова, Ostrov Ushakova), about 328 km2 (127 sq mi)
  • Severnaya Zemlya (Северная Земля, Severnaja Zemlja), about 36,554 km2 (14,114 sq mi)
    • October Revolution Island (Остров Октябрьской Революции, Ostrov Oktyabrskoy Revolyutsii), about 14,170 km2 (5,470 sq mi)
    • Bolshevik Island (о́стров Большеви́к, Ostrov Bolshevik), about 11,206 km2 (4,327 sq mi)
    • Komsomolets Island (остров Комсомолец, Ostrov Komsomolets), about 8,812 km2 (3,402 sq mi)
    • Pioneer Island (остров Пионeр, Ostrov Pioner), about 1,527 km2 (590 sq mi)
  • Bolshoy Begichev Island, (Большой Бегичев, Bolshoy Begichev), about 1,764 km2 (681 sq mi)
  • New Siberian Islands (Новосиби́рские острова, Novosibirskiye Ostrova), about 36,290 km2 (14,010 sq mi)
    • Anzhu Islands (Острова Анжу, Ostrova Anzhu), about 29,900 km2 (11,500 sq mi)
    • De Long Islands (Острова Де-Лонга, Ostrova De-Longa), about 228 km2 (88 sq mi)
    • Lyakhovsky Islands (Ляховские острова, Ostrova Lyakhovskiye), about 6,100 km2 (2,400 sq mi)
  • Medvyezhi Islands (Медвежьи острова, Medvyezhi ostrova), about 65 km2 (25 sq mi)
  • Ayon Island (Айон, Ayon), about 2,000 km2 (770 sq mi)
  • Wrangel Island (остров Врaнгеля, Ostrov Vrangelya), about 7,608 km2 (2,937 sq mi)
  • Big Diomede (остров Ратманова, Ostrov Ratmanova), about 29 km2 (11 sq mi)


  1. ^ a b "Ocean dots". Archived from the original on December 23, 2010. Retrieved 2010-12-23.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  2. ^ a b Kovalev, Aleksandr Antonovich (2003). Contemporary Issues of the Law of the Sea: Modern Russian Approaches. eleven international publishing. p. 178.
  3. ^ [1], Islands Web Site
  • Islands of the Arctic, by J. A. Dowdeswell and M. J. Hambrey. ISBN 0-521-81333-6, Cambridge University Press, 2002

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 74°46′32″N 57°33′46″E / 74.77556°N 57.56278°E / 74.77556; 57.56278