Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, two Scandinavian countries bordering Russia, Sweden and Finland, are considering joining NATO. According to opinion polls, support for membership has almost doubled – 50% in Sweden and 60% in Finland.

Sweden’s largest government party, the Social Democrats, has so far pursued a policy of military neutrality, but according to the latest security assessment, the situation has changed since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the party’s secretary general Tobias Baudin however, he announced that the decision to join the alliance could be made before the summer. While the left and the Greens oppose the country’s partnership, the conservative leader of the right-wing opposition is in favor of the decision. Ulf Kristersson as well as the far-right Democratic Party. The issue of joining NATO may thus be one of the main topics in the upcoming autumn parliamentary elections. Meanwhile, Finland expects to decide on membership in a few weeks, and most likely before the June summit in Madrid.

Russia warns that enlargement will not bring greater stability to Europe

The Kremlin has meanwhile commented on the possibility of expanding NATO to the Scandinavian countries. Russian representative Dmitry Peskov he sees the alliance’s tendency to confront and expand, he said “Would not contribute to stability in Europe”. Russia has called on NATO to abandon any plans to expand eastward before the attack, and in February she was a representative of Russia’s foreign ministry. Maria Zakharova warned before “Military and political consequences” such enlargements. Nevertheless, this has not stopped both Scandinavian countries from increasing their budget expenditure on defense infrastructure. In Helsinki, they have already announced a 14 million redistribution of funds for the purchase of military drones, and the Swedes last month announced an increase in defense spending by three trillion kroner (approximately € 290 million).