Danish Minister of Defence Morten Bødskov signed an agreement over the early warning radar with Faroese counterpart Jenis av Rana during a visit to the Faroe Islands, an autonomous territory of Denmark, on Thursday. The new radar is expected to be located at Sornfelli, a site where a radar has previously stood. It is expected to take five years to install. A previous radar installation on the Faroe Islands was removed in 2007, leaving a gap in radar coverage in the territory’s airspace. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) also called the North Atlantic Alliance, currently does not have a full picture of flight traffic from the northern part of Great Britain towards the Faroe Islands, Iceland and southern parts of Greenland.
“There has been a gap, and it must be closed. The new security situation in Europe is also an important reason for it becoming more relevant to close that gap. The understanding paper emphasizes the good security policy cooperation between the Faroe Islands and Denmark. The radar will be included in the overall overview of the airspace in the area and who operates around the Commonwealth. It will benefit the community at a time when Europe’s security is threatened. This shows that both Denmark and the Faroe Islands take responsibility for the security of the Kingdom. I would like to thank Jenis av Rana for a good collaboration,” Denmark’s Minister of Defense Morten Bødskov said in a press release.
The radar is part of an Arctic spending plan passed by the Danish parliament in February. A budget of almost $56 million is set for establishment of the radar, which has a reach of up to 400 kilometers (248 miles). It will take about five years before it is ready to use. The agreement comes just a day after Bødskov signed a deal with Iceland to share surveillance data with Denmark. Despite the wait for the new radar, NATO allies will most likely be pleased with the system that will cover a previous blind spot in surveillance of airspace in the North Atlantic Ocean and the Arctic region, which includes Russian territory. Surveillance data can be directly monitored in Denmark and shared with NATO.
The Faroe Islands, or simply the Faroes or Faeroes are a North Atlantic archipelago and island country part of the Kingdom of Denmark. It is located 320 kilometres (200 mi) north-northwest of Scotland, and about halfway between Norway (580 kilometres (360 mi) away) and Iceland (430 kilometres (270 mi) away). It is one of the three constituent countries that form the Kingdom of Denmark along with Denmark and Greenland. The islands have a total area of about 1,400 square kilometres (540 sq mi) with a population of 53,882 as of April 2022. While part of the Kingdom of Denmark, the Faroe Islands have been self-governing since 1948, controlling most areas apart from military defence, policing, justice, currency, and foreign affairs.