SU-30SM, SU-35S, and SU-34 flying in formation - Sputnik International, 1920
Get the latest defense news from around the world: breaking stories, photos, videos, in-depth analysis and much more...

Finnish MPs Getting Ready to Enter NATO Alone Despite Swedish PM's Warning

© AP Photo / Burhan OzbiliciSweden's new prime minister, Ulf Kristersson, speaks to the media
Sweden's new prime minister, Ulf Kristersson, speaks to the media  - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.02.2023
Previously, Turkiye's staunch opposition to Sweden's membership sparked a debate in Finland over whether it should join the alliance alone, despite the original intent of "walking the NATO path together" with Stockholm.
It will be bad for several parties if Finland were to be admitted to NATO alone, Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson has said, warning against leaving Sweden out.
"It will be bad for Sweden, bad for our immediate area, bad for NATO and for Sweden's ability to provide security together with Finland," Kristersson was quoted as saying.
Kristersson also argued that the military cooperation between Sweden and Finland will be complicated if only the latter becomes part of the alliance.
The two northern nations both abandoned their decades-old non-alignment and applied for NATO membership in May 2022 after Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine.
The accession process, however, was complicated by insurmountable differences in negotiations with Turkiye, as admitted by the very same Kristersson, and came to a total standstill in January 2023 after Rasmus Paludan, the leader of the fringe Danish political party Hard Line, burned a copy of the Quran in front of the Turkish embassy in Stockholm with permission from the Swedish authorities. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan then condemned the demonstration and said Sweden should not count on Ankara's support for its NATO bid. By contrast, he said that Ankara has no problem with Finland joining NATO.
Turkiye's opposition to Sweden's membership has raised the question of whether Finland should join the alliance alone, despite the original intent of "walking the NATO path together."
Finland's Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto speaks during a media conference at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Monday, Jan. 24, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.02.2023
Finland Ready to Join NATO Without Sweden, Sources Claim
In a fresh poll, the majority of Finnish parties said the country could join before Sweden if necessary. In particular, this view was supported by the main opposition parties: the center-right National Coalition and the nationalist Finns Party, as well as the Center Party.
The Left Alliance was the only party in the survey that was clearly against joining without Sweden. Tellingly, last year, the Left was the most skeptical of the government's plans to join NATO as such.
So far, however, joint accession remains officially a unanimous goal for the both nations.
Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin, the leader of the ruling Social Democrat Party said that Finland and Sweden are part of "the same security environment," and stressed that the countries' defense planning is strongly connected.
Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto of the Greens said that according to Turkiye, Finland has fulfilled the conditions it has set for NATO membership, but that Ankara must still negotiate a solution with Stockholm.
However, the Finnish Parliament intends to complete the approval of the NATO agreements before the April elections in order to process as quickly as possible.
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала