NATO Gains Strength, Sweden Officially Becomes 32nd Member

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NATO Gains Strength

LIPUTAN6 EN –  NATO welcomed a new Sweden officially becomes 32nd member at NATO Gains Strength headquarters in Washington D.C. on March 7, 2024. Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson presented the instrument of accession ratification to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, marking a new chapter in Sweden’s security history and strengthening the Western military alliance.

“This is a historic day for Sweden,” Stoltenberg said in his speech. “Sweden’s accession to NATO will strengthen our collective security.”

Sweden’s decision to join NATO represents a significant geopolitical shift, abandoning its centuries-old policy of non-alignment. The war in Ukraine by Russia served as a major impetus for Sweden to seek shelter under NATO’s umbrella.

“We must face a world that is sometimes not what we expect,” Kristersson said. “NATO is the strongest defensive alliance in the world, and by joining NATO, Sweden will be safer.”

Sweden’s membership in NATO will bolster the alliance’s strength in the Baltic Sea and North Atlantic regions. Sweden boasts a capable and experienced military, with a focus on maritime and air operations.

“Sweden has a lot to offer NATO,” said Swedish Defense Minister Pål Jonson. “We have a strong military, an advanced defense industry, and a strong commitment to democracy and NATO values.”

Sweden’s accession to NATO was met with enthusiasm by other member states. US President Joe Biden called Sweden a “strong and reliable partner” and stated that its membership in NATO will “make our alliance stronger and safer.”

Meanwhile, Russia strongly condemned Sweden’s joining NATO. The Russian Foreign Ministry said the move “will have serious consequences for regional security and stability in Northern Europe.”

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However, NATO maintains that the accessions of Sweden and Finland are a response to Russia’s aggression in Ukraine and are not intended to threaten Russia. Stoltenberg said that NATO “does not seek confrontation with Russia” and remains open to dialogue with Moscow.

With Sweden’s accession, NATO now has 32 member states. The accession process for Sweden and Finland was swift, taking less than a year since both countries submitted their membership applications in May 2023.

The decision by Sweden and Finland to join NATO signifies a significant geopolitical change in the Nordic region. It demonstrates growing concerns among Nordic countries regarding Russian aggression and their desire to ensure their security under the NATO umbrella.

Benefits of Sweden’s Membership in NATO:

NATO Gains Strength

  • Collective security guarantee: Sweden will be protected by Article 5 of the NATO Charter, which states that an attack on one NATO member is considered an attack on all members.
  • Enhanced military cooperation: Sweden will be able to participate in NATO exercises and military operations, and will have access to NATO technology and military equipment.
  • Strengthened Baltic Sea defenses: Sweden’s membership will bolster NATO’s defenses in the Baltic Sea, a strategic region bordering Russia.
  • Increased European stability: Sweden’s membership in NATO will contribute to stability and security in the European region.

Impacts of Sweden Joining NATO:

  • Strengthens the NATO alliance: Sweden’s membership will enhance NATO’s overall military strength and capabilities.
  • Heightened tensions with Russia: Russia is likely to view Sweden’s accession to NATO as a provocation and could escalate tensions in the European region.
  • Bolstered Baltic Sea defenses: Sweden’s membership will strengthen NATO’s defenses in the Baltic Sea, which could help deter future Russian aggression.
  • Enhanced European stability: Sweden’s membership in NATO can contribute to stability and security in the European region.
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Sweden officially becomes 32nd member to NATO is a momentous event that will have significant implications for European security. Sweden’s membership will strengthen NATO and bolster defenses in the Baltic Sea region. It can also serve as a deterrent against future Russian aggression.

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