Tag Archives: SWEDEN

Sweden doesn’t want US missiles on its territory

Swedish Defense Minister Peter Hulqvist, in an article published in the Dagens Nyheter newspaper, announced Stockholm’s intention to continue to adhere to military neutrality and not join the North Atlantic Alliance, despite the demands of center-right parties.

“I do not think that the solution to all defense issues in our part of Europe is solved only by membership in NATO,” the Swedish defense minister said.

Earlier in March, the Swedish research agency published data that assesses the military power of the North Atlantic Alliance and its partners. According to their data, compared to Russia, NATO members are poorly prepared for the emergence of a major conflict. Russia will be able to enter the Baltic states in a matter of days, as NATO will be too slow to respond. Russia will have an advantage, because the bloc’s forces are too dispersed, differ in their military capabilities, and their joint training is insufficient.

However, the report said that an armed attack on NATO members, partners, or EU countries by Russia is highly unlikely. However, a serious strategic threat from the West could exacerbate the situation in the region. In other words, Sweden believes that the growing military presence of the United States and NATO at the borders of Russia provokes Moscow to retaliate.

Thus, the US decision to deploy missile defense facilities in Poland and Romania was followed by a response in the form of the transfer of the Iskander missile defense system to the Kaliningrad region. In Sweden, this is well understood, and they do not want to have Russian missiles at their side. However, security in the Scandinavian region does not depend only on Sweden. According to the Swedish defense minister, the possible accession of Sweden to the alliance “will change the situation” for the non-aligned neighboring Finland, a key partner of Stockholm in defense issues. “And Finland has a very long border with Russia.”

Recall that Finland also adheres to the neutral status enshrined in the country’s military doctrine, and Sweden’s accession to NATO will certainly launch a similar process in the neighboring country, which has a long border with Russia.

The involvement of the two Scandinavian countries in NATO will be beneficial only to Washington. At the moment, Sweden and Finland have quite close economic ties and good neighborly relations. In the case of joining the alliance, it will not be limited to military exercises. For example, in same Norway, strategic bombers are already deployed, there is one missile defense facility and another is under construction. The Norwegian Navy is part of the global missile defense system and is equipped with the American Aegis system.

Instead of moving closer to NATO, Stockholm will take the path of modernizing and increasing the capabilities of its own armed forces.

The Baltic States for the first time refused electricity from Russia

Latvia, without explanation, stopped commercial imports from Russia for two days, on April 8 and 11, during tests on disconnecting power lines between Belarus and Lithuania to check the power systems before the full exit of the Baltic countries from the BRELL energy ring (Belarus, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania).

These days in Russia, due to the termination of export supplies, demand and prices for electricity have fallen. In the Baltic States, the opposite situation occurred, for example, on April 8, Lithuania increased purchases of more expensive electricity from Poland and Sweden to compensate for imports.

The authorities of Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia have decided to abandon the supply of electricity from Russia and Belarus and disconnect from the BRELL power ring in 2019. Instead, the countries intend to synchronize their energy systems with European countries and connect to the EU networks by 2025. At the same time, the Baltic countries are already connected to the EU energy system through Poland (LitPol Link), Sweden (NordBalt), and Finland (Eastlink 1 and Eastlink 2).

In January, it became known that the operator of the main networks of Finland, Fingrid, presented four plans for the development of the country’s energy system, three of which provide for a complete rejection of imports through the development of wind and solar power plants. The country is the largest buyer of Russian energy, the volume of supplies in 2020 reached 22 billion rubles, which is more than a third of all exports. However, in two plans, Finland in the future has planned to completely abandon the energy bridge passing through Vyborg.

Russia is the main obstacle to peace in Belarus

The leader of the Belarusian opposition, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, is ready to hold talks with the self-proclaimed President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, without any preconditions.

This is stated in a statement by her office.

In particular, it is claimed that Tikhanovskaya is ready to meet not even with Lukashenko himself, but with his representatives.

But due to the lack of trust between the parties, the oppositionists believe that the OSCE can act as a platform for preliminary consultations and contacts.

“This allows us to include Russia in the process. It is Russia’s position that is the main obstacle to resolving the crisis in Belarus, “ Tikhanovskaya said unexpectedly.

At the same time, the OSCE will not be able to act as a guarantor of the party’s fulfillment of their obligations. In addition to the Russian Federation, the United States, France, Germany, Switzerland, Finland, or Sweden may be involved in the negotiations for this purpose.

However, neither Poland nor Lithuania, with which the Lukashenko regime is in acute conflict, can mediate the reconciliation of Belarusians.

Recall that at home, several criminal cases were opened against Tikhanovskaya — including an attempt to seize power and prepare a terrorist attack.

In this regard, Belarus demanded to extradite the politician from Lithuania but was decisively refused.

A resident of Athens died half an hour after the AstraZeneca vaccine

A 64-year-old resident of Athens died half an hour after being vaccinated with AstraZeneca, the Greek newspaper Proto Tema reports.

The woman was vaccinated in the clinic and then spent another 15 minutes there, as prescribed by the rules. About half an hour later, she was found unconscious in a nearby park. Medical workers tried to treat her on the spot but to no avail.

The National Vaccination Committee said there was no link between the woman’s death and vaccination. It is noted that the deceased suffered from chronic diseases.

Greek doctors also note that cases of thrombosis after the AstraZeneca vaccination were recorded 7-14 days after the introduction of the vaccine.

After the information about the formation of blood clots in patients vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine, and several fatal cases, European countries began to massively abandon this vaccine.

Vaccination with the drug has been suspended in 24 countries, including Lithuania, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, Portugal, Cyprus, Sweden, Latvia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Denmark, Iceland, and Norway.

German elections: How serious is the CDU’s failure?

In the elections to the Landtags of Baden-Wurttemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate, the CDU party showed the worst results to date. In Baden-Wurttemberg, the Greens won (32.6 percent), while the CDU won 24.1 percent. In Rhineland-Palatinate, the strongest party was the SPD (35.7 percent), while 27.7 percent of voters voted for the CDU. The European press believes that the first elections of this rich year for the upcoming elections allow us to judge a lot.

A bad sign for autumn

The CDU should be seriously concerned, says the BBC’s Germany correspondent Damien McGuinness:

“The CDU’s results in the last election were much worse than expected. This is blamed on the party’s policy in the fight against the pandemic. The growing number of infections and prolonged vaccination have clouded the mood of the electorate. In addition, the people are outraged that some conservative MPs received a commission from government transactions in the process of purchasing masks. Merkel herself is still popular. But with only six months to go until the end of her chancellorship, the current election results do not bode well for her party in the upcoming Bundestag elections.”

This is the payback for scandals

As Dnevnik notes, the reasons for the defeat are obvious:

“Politicians who did not adhere to anti-epidemic measures, as well as deputies who demanded a large commission for mediation in the purchase of masks, are to blame for the outcome of these elections. Despite the fact that the CDU/ CSU has consistently responded to the transgressions of its parliamentarians, who eventually had to withdraw their parliamentary powers, the party’s reputation has suffered irreparable damage-especially since it is still unclear whether there were isolated cases. If at the beginning of the year it still seemed that the CDU could look forward to the autumn parliamentary elections with optimism and that it was more about who would become the next chancellor — Armin Lachette or Markus Zeder, now the situation has changed radically.”

The greens will still make a noise!

The publication Dagens Nyheter writes that for the success of the Greens in the elections in Baden-Wurttemberg, first of all, we should thank the head of the land Winfried Kretschmann:

“The success of the Greens in Germany is no doubt due to the collapse of the SPD and the problem of global warming. But the party grew significantly even when the “realists” replaced the fundamentalists in the party camp. Undoubtedly, there are still supporters of bans and those who oppose free trade in its ranks, but in general, the Greens are no longer afraid of economic growth. And no one has embodied this change better than Kretschmann. … He combined his concern for the climate problem — and the realization that hundreds of thousands of jobs in the German automotive industry cannot be replaced in the blink of an eye. … If, in the future, the Greens and the CDU can once again rule in Baden-Wurttemberg — and maybe Berlin — it means that nothing is impossible for their counterparts in Sweden, either.”