Security analysts say Finland and Sweden joining NATO will help deter Russia

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, speaking at a news conference with Finnish President Sauli Ninistট in Helsinki, Finland on Wednesday, signed a security agreement with Finland just before European countries decided to apply for NATO membership.

Frank Augustine | AFP | Getty Images

Finland and Sweden’s decision to join NATO will boost resistance against Russia in northern Europe and increase the security of the US-led military alliance, an Atlantic Council analyst told CNBC on Thursday.

His comments came just before Finnish President Sauli Ninistিস্ত and Prime Minister Sanaa Marin announced their country’s application to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization “without delay”.

“NATO membership will strengthen Finland’s security. As a member of NATO, Finland will strengthen the entire defense alliance,” they said in a joint statement.

A similar announcement is expected from Sweden later this week.

“Sweden and Finland, members of NATO, will increase the barriers in the region because they will supply the alliance.” [because of] The ability to plan extensively for the security of Northern Europe, “said Anna Weisslander, Northern Europe’s director of the Atlantic Council.

Membership in a political and military alliance would be a historic decision for Finland, which shares a 1,300-kilometer border with Russia. Nordic race After the defeat of the Soviet Union in World War II, it adopted neutrality. Sweden has not been part of any military alliance for more than 200 years.

Weisslander said both countries were ready to deal with repeated political and military threats from Russian President Vladimir Putin who opposed their membership.

“President Putin and Russia have already announced several times that there will be military and political consequences,” he told Capital Connection, adding that he expects more such warnings in the coming days.

“We have made preparations. We have removed the military installations … and hopefully [Russian] Cyber ​​attacks, electronic jamming or more air intrusions, ”he said, adding that both Sweden and Finland are members of the European Union.

“Sweden and Finland are strong democracies with sophisticated economies and, therefore, will contribute to the underlying values ​​of the alliance,” Weislander said.

The armed forces of both countries enjoy high integration with NATO member countries, he added.

‘Interoperability’ with NATO members

“Finland is already a security provider. It has a strong military force, it is small but technically sophisticated. Despite having a long border with Russia, it can not only defend itself but it has worked with NATO on international missions from the Balkans, as well as Sweden.” In Afghanistan. And they’ve practiced extensively, “Wieslander said.

He said both countries were “operable” as NATO members.

“[They] Analysts have been working with NATO on international missions since the mid-1990s, “the analyst said, citing the Balkans, Afghanistan and Libya.” And there were hundreds of other exercises. “

“So their usability isn’t a problem,” Weislander said.

Sweden and Finland co-operate extensively on defense issues in line with NATO standards, he added.

If both countries join NATO, it would signal an “open door” to NATO policy, Wieslander said.

“When countries are ready to join and contribute to the security of the entire Transatlantic region [NATO] Will be ready to take new members as well. There will be no closed doors for NATO, “he said.

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