Sweden’s position on not joining NATO remains in place: Premier

Sweden’s position on not joining NATO remains in place, the prime minister said, adding that the Nordic country will decide its own security policies.

Sweden does not plan to join NATO, Magdalena Andersson said and noted that Russia does not have an alarming threat and military activity on the Swedish borders.

“It is obvious that the admission of Finland and Sweden to NATO, which is primarily … a military bloc, would have serious military and political consequences that would require retaliatory steps by our country,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a weekly press briefing in Moscow on Friday.

Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin said on her part that the discussion of her country’s NATO membership changed after Russia attacked Ukraine.

“NATO is as united and resolute as it’s ever been, and NATO will maintain its Open Door to those European states who share our values and who one day may seek to join our Alliance,” said the US President Joe Biden, according to a White House statement on Friday.

Sweden and Finland, along with EU representatives, attended Friday’s extraordinary NATO leaders’ summit.

Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine entered its third day Saturday with the latest reports indicating that Russian troops clashing with Ukrainian forces in the streets of the capital Kyiv throughout the night.

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the military intervention Thursday, days after recognizing two separatist-held enclaves in eastern Ukraine.

He claimed that Moscow had no plan to occupy the neighboring country but wanted to “demilitarize” and “denazify” Ukraine.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russia of trying to install a puppet government and said Ukrainians will defend their country against Russian aggression.