Parliament in Helsinki will consider the issue next week. Prime Minister Sanna Marin said this week that a decision would be made within weeks. According to her, Finland and Sweden should cooperate.
Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson does not want to make a hasty decision, but she wants to “thoroughly but quickly” determine what is best for Sweden’s security, she said with Marina. Svenska Dagbladet wrote this week, citing sources within Andersson’s Social Democratic Party, that it wants to apply for membership in the Western military alliance at the NATO summit in Madrid in June.
Both Nordic countries are members of the European Union, but are non-military, although they usually attend NATO meetings as observers. Russia’s attack on Ukraine has shaken public opinion, raising support for NATO membership. NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg has already expressed the expectation that about thirty current NATO countries will welcome Finland and Sweden.
Russia has warned both countries not to join NATO and has threatened to deploy nuclear weapons in the region if that happens. Moscow on Friday warned of “consequences” without citing them. Russia shares a border of more than 1,300 kilometers with Finland.
NATO ambitions make Sweden and Finland particularly vulnerable, says EU correspondent Alexander Bakker in The Ukraine Update: