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Opening of a debate in the Swedish government with a view to joining NATO | War in Ukraine

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After more than 200 years of neutrality, the Russian invasion of Ukraine could soon convince the Swedes as well as their Finnish neighbors to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Although just recently the Swedish Prime Minister, Magdalena Andersson, affirmed that she wanted to preserve the neutrality of her country – which has not been involved in any war since 1814 – since the end of March, she has now affirmed that she no longer rules out joining the NATO.

Historically opposed to joining any military alliance, the Swedish Social Democratic Party revalidated a motion to this effect at its last congress in the light of events in Ukraine and above all, five months before the elections where the country’s security will be a central theme.

The debate announced on Monday, open to all party members, will be a broader discussion than the question of a yes or a no to NATO membership , said in a press release the number 2 of the Social Democrats, Tobias Baudin. This security policy dialogue should be completed before the summer, according to him.

In the ranks of the right-wing opposition, the question is, so to speak, settled. Conservative Ulf Kristersson, leader of the right-wing opposition, has announced his intention to submit a membership application if he wins a majority in Parliament in September.

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The extreme right Sweden Democrats (SD), the third party in the 2018 elections, also opened up to the idea of ​​membership, after having been opposed to it.

A warship cruises in a fjord.

A Swedish Navy ship is taking part in a coastal exercise in October 2021.

Photo: tt news agency/afp via getty ima / FREDRIK SANDBERG

The possibility of early NATO membership is also on the agenda in Finland, which shares a border with Russia and has also maintained a neutral status for decades. Unthinkable a few months ago, the idea of ​​joining NATO has come a long way in recent weeks in these two countries.

Support for NATO membership almost doubled after the invasion of Ukraine, jumping to almost 50% in Sweden and 60% in Finland. According to US officials quoted in the Times from London, Sweden and Finland would be ready to join the Alliance in the summer.

These officials said the two northern European countries joined NATO last week. a topic of conversation covered in multiple sessions between the foreign ministers of the Atlantic Alliance, talks in which Sweden and Finland took part, adds the British daily.

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Let us recall that at the end of February, Finland took the decision historical to get involved in a conflict in Europe by delivering arms stocks to Ukraine.

Russia made a huge strategic blunder according to US officials interviewed by the British newspaper. By attempting to undermine the influence of the Alliance in Europe by attacking Ukraine, Moscow will ultimately only succeed in throwing Finland and Sweden into the arms of NATO.

NATO will not bring stability to Europe, protests the Kremlin

In Moscow, the government of Vladimir Putin declared that the entry of Sweden and Finland into the ranks of NATO will not bring more stability to Europe.

We have repeatedly said that the alliance remains a confrontational tool and its future expansion will not bring stability to the European continent, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday.

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