Nuclear weapons or NATO bases not required in Sweden in peacetime

Nuclear weapons or NATO bases not required in Sweden in peacetime

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Nuclear weapons or NATO bases not required in Sweden in peacetime

Earlier, Tobias Billstrom confirmed that the Kingdom backs the alliance’s nuclear doctrine

Sweden sees no reason to deploy nuclear weapons or permanent NATO bases on its soil in peacetime, Foreign Minister Tobias Billstrom told the parliament in a foreign policy declaration following Sweden’s accession to NATO.

“With broad support in the Riksdag (parliament), Sweden applied to join NATO without reservations. This stance remains firm, but as in the other Nordic countries, there is no reason to have nuclear weapons or permanent bases on Swedish territory in peacetime,” the statement said.

Its authors said with assurance, “Sweden will also safeguard and promote transatlantic cooperation, work for continued US engagement in Europe and contribute to the security of NATO as a whole in accordance with the Alliance’s 360-degree approach.”

On Wednesday, Billstrom confirmed in an interview with the SVT television that the Kingdom backs the alliance’s nuclear doctrine.

“Naturally, Sweden supports NATO’s nuclear concept as a deterrent,” the minister said. “It is crucial to have it, because if democracies don’t possess nuclear weapons, dictatorships [will] possess them, and they will not give them up but will use them for blackmail. Therefore, we have this concept and we should proceed from it.”

In addition, the statement reads, “Sweden’s geographical location and our capability to support other Allies is essential to NATO’s ability to operate in our part of Europe.” Sweden’s government is poised to “engage in all of NATO’s core tasks: deterrence and collective defense, crisis management and security cooperation.”

Stockholm claims that Russia constitutes a threat.

“In relation to Russia, our security must be safeguarded from a position of strength – political, economic and military,” the statement said. “Our contribution to NATO’s deterrence and defense is an important part of constraining Russia’s scope for action and is of considerable benefit to the Alliance as a whole.”

The foreign minister recalled that Sweden’s military spending would exceed two percent of GDP in 2024 and urged to “stand for fair [financial] burden-sharing within NATO.”

In December 2023, the Swedish and US defense ministers inked the Defense Cooperation Agreement (DCA) which opens access for the US military to 17 Swedish military bases, facilities and military areas, located in Kiruna, Ostersund and Lulea in the north, Halmstad in the southwest, Ronneby in the south, Visby in Gotland, and Uppsala that is 70 kilometers from the capital. The Berga naval base, stationed on the Stockholm Archipelago, is also on the list. The agreement does not stipulate prohibiting the US from deploying nuclear weapons in the mentioned bases.