In Finland, Russian bases near the borders were considered a consequence of joining NATO

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Moscow warned that when Finland joins NATO, Russia will have to strengthen the grouping of troops along the borders with the alliance. Niiniste did not rule out the appearance of Russian military bases near Finland and the strengthening of the presence in the Baltic ” alt=”Finland considers Russian bases near the borders as a consequence of joining NATO” />

Sauli Niinistö

Warnings from Russian officials about the consequences if Finland joins NATO— expected reaction, Finnish President Sauli Niiniste told Ilta-Sanomat.

“This is a fairly consistent continuation of what we heard many years ago, including from President Putin,” — he thinks. Niiniste believes that Russia can build military bases near the eastern borders of the country and begin to group troops there. The President of Finland also admits that Russia will begin to build up its military presence in the Baltic.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said earlier that Finland's accession to NATO would have “negative consequences for peace and stability in northern Europe,” while Dmitry Medvedev, deputy head of the Security Council, warned that Russia would have to seriously strengthen the grouping of ground forces along the borders with the alliance and significantly deploy naval forces in the Gulf of Finland.

Finland, like Sweden, has the status of a state— NATO partner. The bloc includes 30 countries, of the Scandinavian states it includes Norway and Denmark. The Finnish authorities have previously said that they will not rush into the decision to join the North Atlantic Alliance.

The “turning point”, according to Niniiste, for him was the requirements for security guarantees that Russia announced in December 2021, including— non-expansion of NATO to the east.

“These requirements also extended to Finland and Sweden. <…> This suggests that Russia does not see us as it saw us, that is, as militarily non-aligned, fully sovereign stable states, but in a sense— as part of their interests»,— he said, adding that Russia thus tried to limit the choice of Finland and Sweden.

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The Times sources reported that Sweden and Finland are ready to join NATO this summer. According to Erkki Tuomioi, Deputy Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Finnish Parliament, Helsinki may apply in the coming weeks.

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