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NATO Secretary General Says Sweden’s Membership Makes Alliance Stronger

Home Defense Security Cooperation NATO Secretary General Says Sweden’s Membership Makes Alliance Stronger
NATO Secretary General Says Sweden’s Membership Makes Alliance Stronger

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Sweden has strengthened the international alliance since the Nordic country officially became a member on March 7.

During his visit to Berga Naval Base last week, Stoltenberg discussed Sweden’s many contributions to NATO, including highly capable forces and advanced defense capabilities.

He noted that Sweden spends more than 2 percent of its gross domestic product on its military. The alliance strongly recommends that all member nations commit 2 percent of their GDP to defense and ensure the organization’s military readiness.

He said Sweden’s NATO membership builds “our presence not least in the High North and the Baltic region.”

Stoltenberg also commended Stockholm’s recent pledge to contribute to NATO’s Air Policing mission. 

On Friday, Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson announced that the Nordic nation will deploy Swedish fighter jets as part of the air surveillance mission to preserve airspace security across the alliance. The Swedish aircraft will primarily operate over the Baltic Sea.

Stoltenberg’s visit to Stockholm comes a few months after Swedish JAS-39 Gripen fighters intercepted a Russian Tu-134 airliner and an An-26 transport military plane over the Baltic Sea. On Thursday, the NATO head visited another NATO newcomer, Finland.

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