Sweden And Finland Snub Putin Acceleration Of NATO Applications

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If Russian President Vladimir Putin has accomplished anything with his attack on the less powerful country of Ukraine, including his attacks on Ukrainian civilians that have amounted to accusations of genocide, it’s banding the west together in Ukraine’s defense.

Putin has vowed to use nuclear weapons against any Western country who attempts to join NATO in response to his attacks, but the prime ministers of both Sweden and Finland, countries that have remained neutral during most violent conflicts, to vow to submit simultaneous applications for NATO membership as soon as May 2022. Reports from news media in Finland have confirmed the potential timeline.

According to The Guardian:

‘The Finnish daily Iltalehti said on Monday that Stockholm had “suggested the two countries indicate their willingness to join” on the same day, and that Helsinki had agreed “as long as the Swedish government has made its decision”.’

Prime ministers from both countries have indicated that the move was being considered, but these reports mark the first confirmations that a decision has been made and that the timeline would be advanced to a date so close in the future. Both leaders say that Putin’s acts of aggression have created new considerations for security in the area.

‘Finland’s prime minister, Sanna Marin, said then that her country, which shares a 1,300km (810 mile) border with Russia, would decide whether to apply to join the alliance “quite fast, in weeks not months”, despite the risk of infuriating Moscow.’

Despite historic neutrality in world conflicts, the citizens of both Sweden and Finland back the move. With support from western countries everywhere, Putin’s moves have created a unified front among countries taking a stand against him.

‘Recent opinion polls have shown as many as 68% of Finns are in favour of joining the alliance, more than double the figure before the invasion, with only 12% against. Polling in Sweden suggests a slim majority of Swedes also back membership.’