Joining NATO would enhance deterrence across northern Europe, according to a cross-party review published by the government on Friday.
The review assessed the changed security environment following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and what NATO membership would mean for the Nordic country. It concluded that “Swedish NATO membership would raise the threshold for military conflicts and thus have a deterrent effect in northern Europe.”
Sweden is expected to decide on whether it intends to join NATO soon, after the leaders of neighboring Finland announced its support for membership on Thursday.
The report, presented in Stockholm by Foreign Minister Ann Linde and Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist alongside party representatives, states that “Russian provocation and retaliatory measures against Sweden cannot be ruled out during a transition period in connection with a Swedish application for NATO membership.”
“There is a readiness to respond to Russian threats, but it is not possible to eliminate with certainty all the risks of Russian retaliatory measures,” it added.
The report added: “If both Sweden and Finland were NATO members, all Nordic and Baltic countries would be covered by collective defence guarantees. The current uncertainty as to what form collective action would take if a security crisis or armed attack occurred would decrease.”