Moscow: Russian scientists have discovered a secret Nazi military base which was built on direct orders from German dictator Adolf Hitler located 1,000 kilometres from the North Pole.
The location of the mysterious site known as 'Schatzgraber' or 'Treasure Hunter' on Alexandra Land in the Arctic Circle, a remote island was abandoned in the year 1944 when the Nazis stationed at the base ate infected polar bear meat that led to an outbreak of the disease.
Researchers exploring the isolated island, which is now a Russian Territory, stumbled upon over 500 relics, including the ruins of bunkers, discarded petrol canisters and even paper documents - preserved by the island's freezing climate.
The base is believed to have been constructed on direct orders from Hitler in 1942, a year after his invasion of Russia.
Evgeny Ermolov, a senior researcher at the Russian Arctic National Park said "Before it was only known from written sources, but now we also have real proof".
Researchers found bullets, scraps of tents and personal items such as shoes; many of which appear to be dated and marked with the swastika.
"About 500 items of historical value have been collected on the grounds of the former Treasure Hunter German station that operated on the Alexandra Land island of Franz Josef Land from September 1943 until July 1944," said Yulia Petrova, National Park press secretary.
(With PTI inputs)