Finland And Sweden Could Soon Join NATO

The possible accession of Finland and Sweden to NATO is taking shape. The most significant effect of possible NATO membership would be that Finland and Sweden would slip under the collective defense enshrined in NATO Article 5.

Helsinki. Finland is rapidly approaching a decision on NATO membership. Prime Minister Sanna Marin said during a visit to Stockholm that she did not want to set a timetable, but expected that a Finnish decision would be made “within weeks, not months”.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine changed everything. Shortly thereafter, government submitted a comprehensive security analysis to the Riksdag in Helsinki, which is intended to serve as the basis for a parliamentary debate on the NATO question. Parliament is due to deal with it as early as next week.

“As broad a consensus as possible” sought
President Sauli Niinisto said that with the presentation of the report, the phase of parliamentary deliberations has now begun. Now it’s about finding a clear line for Finland. During her visit to Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson, Marin also emphasized how important it is to achieve as broad a consensus as possible in view of Russia’s “big neighbor”.

Finland borders Russia for more than 1,300 kilometers, and the two countries also have a centuries-long history. The Russian war of aggression in Ukraine has rekindled a debate about a possible NATO membership in the Nordic country as well as in neighboring Sweden. So far, both countries are close partners of the alliance, but not members. The difference between a partner and a member is very clear, Marin said.

Accessions would have to be approved by all of the current 30 NATO members. Russia has repeatedly warned Finland and Sweden against such a move.

Pros and cons of NATO membership
Marin and Niinisto have not publicly positioned themselves for or against joining NATO. The government report does not provide a clear direction either, but rather highlights the advantages and disadvantages of membership. According to the analysis, should Finland request it, the country would have to prepare for large-scale attempts at influence and risks that are difficult to predict. Risks also included rising tensions along the long Finnish-Russian border.

According to the analysis, the most significant effect of a possible NATO membership would be that Finland would slip under the collective defense enshrined in NATO Article 5. At the same time, possible accession would significantly expand NATO territory and double the alliance’s land border with Russia. The alliance would also move closer to important Russian areas such as the Kola Peninsula and the metropolis of St. Petersburg. And membership would not oblige Finland to accept the stationing of nuclear weapons, permanent bases or troops.

Sweden is waiting for its own security policy assessment
The NATO discussion is already more advanced in Finland than next door in Sweden. There they are waiting for their own security policy assessment, which is to be published by the end of May. According to information from the newspaper “Svenska Dagbladet“, the party leadership of Andersson’s ruling Social Democrats has already decided on the NATO issue. The newspaper reported that Andersson’s aim is to submit the corresponding Swedish application at the NATO summit in Madrid at the end of June. In the past, the party has spoken out against NATO membership.

The Prime Minister did not confirm the report. You have to analyze the situation as to what is best for Sweden’s security and the population, she said instead of relevant questions.

 

Reviewer overview

Finland And Sweden Could Soon Join NAT - /10

Summary

The possible accession of Finland and Sweden to NATO is taking shape. The most significant effect of possible NATO membership would be that Finland and Sweden would slip under the collective defense enshrined in NATO Article 5.

0 Bad!