A NATO membership would increase Sweden’s security. This is the conclusion of Security analysis which was presented this Friday and will be an important basis for the Nordic country’s decision on joining the Atlantic Alliance.
“The main consequence of possible NATO membership is that Sweden would become part of NATO’s collective security,” explains Foreign Minister Ann Linde.
The security analysis has been drawn up by all eight parties in the Riksdag (parliament) and was presented at a joint news conference on Friday.
According to the analysis, the main consequence of NATO membership is that Sweden would become part of NATO’s collective security and would be covered by security guarantees under Article 5.
It is claimed that a possible Swedish membership in NATO would also raise the threshold for military conflicts and thus provide a conflict prevention effect in Northern Europe.
An attack cannot be ruled out
Finnish and Swedish accession to NATO would be negatively perceived by Russia and lead to retaliatory measures. The assessment in the security policy analysis is, however, that Sweden will not be exposed to conventional military attack as a reaction to a possible Swedish request for NATO. “On the other hand, it has been established that an armed attack on Sweden cannot be ruled out,” Linde warned.
Sweden’s freedom to join military alliances is now complemented by a series of bilateral defense collaborations with, among others, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Finland.
But according to the analysis, defense cooperation is limited by the fact that does not include mutual defense obligations. The prospects of NATO or the United States giving security guarantees to Sweden without membership are considered small. It is also not considered realistic to develop other bilateral defense alliances outside of NATO.
According to the foreign minister, Sweden would need support to raise the threshold and protection measures during the accession period. “It should be noted that these are security insurances of certain NATO countries, not legally binding defense guarantees. We can only achieve that as full members, says the Chancellor and highlights that talks have been held with the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany”.
Although the analysis points to a number of advantages of Swedish NATO membership, the text does not provide a recommendation on whether Sweden should join or not. However, the analysis serves as an important basis for the NATO decision of the Social Democrats and the government, which will be presented on Sunday and Monday.
All parliamentary parties are behind the analysis part of the report and agree with Russia’s opinion. However, the Left Party and the Green Party are not behind the report as a whole, as they oppose joining the transatlantic military organization.