The large-scale Swedish search operation for a foreign submarine, detected in Sweden's territorial waters a week ago, has cost Sweden nearly $2.7 million, Swedish Navy’s Rear Admiral Anders Grenstad said on Friday.
“The estimated cost [of the operation] is 20 million kroner ($2.7 million),” Grenstad announced, calling the submarine incident “unacceptable”.
According to British newspapper, the search operation lasted for one week and was cancelled by Swedish officials on Friday. “Our assessment is that in the inner archipelago there was a plausible foreign underwater operation,” Grenstad said. “But we believe that what has violated Swedish waters has left.”
The alleged small submarine was noticed by an individual, who informed military forces, the Guardian reported. Some media sources speculated that the vessel could belong to the Russian Naval Forces, carrying out a secret operation in the region. According to experts, the submarine also could have had technical troubles or emergency situation.
Russia’s Defense Ministry refuted this information and called the search operation a “tragicomedy”. Defense Ministry representatives reported that Russian Naval Forces no longer possess small submarines and that there were no extraordinary or “emergency situations, involving Russian military vessels”.
The search involved hundreds of people and was said to have been Sweden’s largest military operation since early 1990s.