- Finland’s leaders said that the Nordic country must apply for membership in NATO immediately in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
- Sweden is also expected to undertake similar actions.
- However, the Turkish President has said that Turkey is “not favourable” towards Finland and Sweden joining NATO.
Finland and Sweden’s aspirations
- Since the onset of the Ukraine crisis, Finland and Sweden have sought the protection of NATO and are considering a paradigm shift of their respective security policies of neutrality and military independence.
- Recently held polls in the two countries suggest that a substantial majority of people are backing the countries to join NATO.
- Amid the concerns of cyber and hybrid attacks, violations of airspace and territorial sea by Russia, Finland and Sweden are looking forward to their membership in NATO as the membership offers them numerous advantages in this context.
- The Turkish President said that the country is not of a favourable opinion as Sweden and other Scandinavian countries allegedly support Kurdish and other militants whom Turkey considers to be terrorists.
- The Turkish President said that he does not want to repeat Turkey’s past “mistake” of agreeing to readmit Greece into NATO’s military wing in 1980.
- He claimed that the action helped Greece take a stance against Turkey due to the backing of NATO.
- As NATO decides on all matters based on consensus i.e all the 30 member countries have potential veto power, Turkey might block the induction of Finland and Sweden into NATO.
- Considering that this expansion of NATO would surround Russia with NATO countries in the Baltic Sea and the Arctic, Russia warned Finland and Sweden of retaliatory military-technical actions to counter the threats to its national security.
- Russia is also set to suspend its electricity to Finland citing that Finland has not paid for the electricity sold in May.