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A top secret National Socialist base in the depths of the Arctic has been found by Russian scientists after more than 70 years.

The mysterious site is located on a remote island in Russian territory — more than 960km from the North Pole, reports The Sun.

Set up in 1942, a year after Adolf Hitler invaded the Soviet Union, the military outpost on Alexandra land was christened “Schatzgraber” or “Treasure Hunter”. The island was strategically vital to both sides during World War II because of its value in producing weather reports

The information that it produced was crucial for the movement of troops and equipment in the frozen north of the USSR. This was especially true as the brutal Russian winter set in that year, causing the relentless German advance to grind to a halt in the snow.

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And the island was all the more important because most of the other potential sites capable of producing polar weather reports in the region were held by the Allies.

But the name given to the base suggests the Nazis may have had another, more secret, mission — possibly searching for a mythical treasure trove or ancient artefacts.

A detachment of soldiers was dropped off on the island that year, establishing a base on the barren, rocky isle. The men were resupplied by air drops until the base was suddenly evacuated in 1944. All of the outpost’s inhabitants were poisoned that year after eating polar bear meat contaminated with roundworms. The survivors were rescued by a German U-boat and the base abandoned.

Since then, there was no fixed presence on the island until 1990, after the fall of the Soviet Union. And now, more than 70 years later, the location of the Nazi base has finally been discovered by Russian scientists.

Images showed rusted bullets, shells, and patrol cans scattered across the rocky, frozen ground. The team also found the remnants of bunkers and even 70-year-old papers, all remarkably well preserved by the intense cold.

In total, more than 500 objects were recovered from the site. Russia is now establishing its own military base on Alexandra Land.

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