Both countries, which are not part of NATO, seek mechanisms to shield themselves from the fear of being attacked by Moscow
The fear that the military aggressions of Russia go beyond Ukraine it is real. This is why the governments of Sweden and Finlandtwo countries of the European Union (EU) which however are not part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), sent a letter yesterday asking Brussels to be prepared for a possible new attack launched by Vladimir Putin.
Specifically, the two Nordic nations ask the President of the European Council, Charles Michaelthat in the Versailles Summit that this Thursday brings together European leaders, a special mention is made of article 42.7 of the community club, which stresses that “if a Member State is the object of armed aggression in its territory, the other members will owe it help and assistance with all means at your reach”. The petition has been accepted by all community partners and included in the draft agreed upon at the meeting.
This clause was added in 2009 to certify a common defense mechanism against possible armed aggression in its territory. That both Sweden and Finland ask Brussels highlighting it highlights the growing concern that Russian military expansionism threatens to spill over its borders.
For now, both countries rule out requesting their entry into NATO, where clause number 5 of their treaty also invokes common defense against aggression, for fear that this may further tighten the rope with Moscow. Stockholm did it this past Tuesday, and the prime minister earned criticism from the center-right opposition. Helsinki, for her part, is in the midst of a review of her security policy and is expected to decide this spring whether or not she will apply to join the Atlantic alliance.
Of the eight Nordic and Baltic countries, Sweden like Finland are the only ones that are not members of NATO. That could change in a context in which the fear that Russian aggressions will expand and prolong is leading more and more citizens of that region to support joining the Western military alliance.
higher military spending
But beyond strengthening their ties with the EU, these countries also aim to improve their defense systems. The Swedish government announced this Thursday that it intends to increase the military expenses annual up to 2% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), a decision accelerated by the military attack deployed by the Kremlin in neighboring Ukraine. “The political security situation around Sweden has been worsening for a long time. The Russian attack on Ukraine further accentuates this evolution. The allocation for defense must increase to 2% of GDP as soon as possible,” he explained during a conference. press the social democratic prime minister, Magdalena Anderson.
That same fear is what has led other nations in the post-Soviet space that are not part of the EU, such as Georgia, Moldova or Ukraine itself, to apply to join the community club, a process that could be activated shortly.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.