Fuel to fire
Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 apparently to stop NATO’s further expansion into its neighbourhood. But in less than three months, the same invasion has pushed two countries in that neighbourhood to consider NATO membership.
What is happening?
- Finland-The Prime Minister and President of Finland, which has stayed neutral since the end of the Second World War, said they hoped their country would apply for NATO membership “without delay”.
- Sweden-Sweden, which has stayed out of military alliances for 200 years, stated that NATO membership would strengthen its national security and stability in the Baltic and Nordic regions
- Reaction by Russia- If these two countries now formally apply for membership, it would be the biggest strategic setback for Russian President whose most important foreign policy focus has been on weakening NATO.