Page last updated at 12:27 GMT, Saturday, 19 September 2009 13:27 UK

Northeast Passage navigated


Two German ships have become the first Western commercial vessels to navigate the so-called Northeast Passage from Asia to Europe.

The shipping route goes via the Arctic, cutting down the journey time by at least 10 days.

Navigating it without the help of ice-breakers has only become possible because of the thawing of the Arctic ice - caused, some say, by global warming.

Richard Galpin reports from Archangel, northern Russia.


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