- BBC News World
Russia has demanded that Finland and Sweden not join NATO, warning that such a move would not lead to stability in Europe.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that NATO was “a tool of conflict.”
His remarks came after US defense officials described Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as a “major strategic mistake.” This will lead to NATO expansion.
The U.S. delegation expects both Nordic countries to submit their candidatures for membership in the coalition. Probably since June.
Experts believe Washington will support the expansion of NATO to 32 members. U.S. State Department officials said last week that talks had taken place between NATO leaders and the foreign ministers of Finland and Sweden.
Finland and Sweden, increasingly determined
Prior to the invasion, Russia had promised that the alliance would not expand in the future. However, the war has prompted NATO troops to further deploy in its eastern part. And an increase in popular support for members From Sweden and Finland.
Finnish parliamentarians are expected to receive a security briefing from intelligence officials this week as Prime Minister Channa Marin hopes the government will end the debate over whether or not to submit the country’s NATO bid this summer.
Finland shares a 1,340 km border with RussiaThat is why it looks at the invasion of Ukraine with particular concern.
As for Sweden, the ruling Social Democrats, traditionally opposed to NATO membership, have indicated that it will reconsider its position following Russia’s attack on its western neighbor. Party secretary Tobias Boudin told local media that a review of the matter would be completed in the coming months.
“When Russia invaded Ukraine, Sweden’s security situation changed fundamentally,” the party said in a statement on Monday.
What is NATO and how does it help Ukraine?
Moscow, however, has made it clear that it opposes a possible expansion of the alliance. Peskov warned that NATO “is not such an alliance that guarantees peace and stability, and that its expansion will not bring further security to the European continent.”
Last week Peskov announced that he wanted Russia “Reconstructing the situation” with their own actions If Sweden and Finland join NATO.
In February, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova warned of “political and military repercussions” if the two countries joined the camp.
NATO was formed in 1949 after the fall of the Berlin Wall to counter the threat of Soviet expansion. Many former communist Eastern European countries joinedS.
In the event of an armed attack on any individual member, the member states promise to assist each other.
Despite the threats, Finland and Sweden increased their new approach to NATO and increased defense spending.
On Monday the Finnish military announced a new plan to allocate about $ 15 million to purchase drones.
In Sweden, the government last month announced a 3 billion crown ($ 317 million) increase in the 2022 defense budget.
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