Russian President Vladimir Putin’s efforts to counter NATO’s attempts at expansion were dealt another setback as Turkey facilitated Sweden’s way to join the strategic alliance.The Turkish parliament approved Sweden’s NATO membership with a vote of 287 to 55, as reported by the Associated Press.

Significant Amount

Four members made the decision to abstain,

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While a notable number decided to not participate at all in the vote.

Potential Threat To Russia

Putin and his allies have vehemently opposed NATO expansion, 

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Arguing that it could be a potential threat to Russia. 

President Of Russia 

Despite opposition from the president of Russia, NATO decided to move forward with its intentions of expanding its borders and brought Finland into the alliance last year. 

Source: AP

Despite this, Sweden’s membership is still unknown, facing objections from Turkey and Hungary.

The Baltic Sea

If Sweden were to join NATO, the alliance would have a considerable influence on the Baltic Sea, with the exception of the Russian exclave Kaliningrad that is situated between Lithuania and Poland.

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Putin’s office was contacted on Tuesday by Newsweek for a response.

The Military

Lagadec said, “Finland’s accession on the face of it is such an obvious own-goal for the Kremlin,”

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“Putin is also fully cognizant of the fact that there’s not much he can do in practice to retaliate, as his military is already overstretched in Ukraine.”

Research Professor 

Dr. Erwan Lagadec, an associate research professor at George Washington University’s Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, told Newsweek that Putin’s response to Finland’s admission, 

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dismissing its significance as “not a big deal, “may be repeated if Sweden’s inclusion is confirmed.”

Elections In The Future

He added,

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“The context of the upcoming elections in Russia makes it even more likely that Putin will dismiss the news, and let his ‘attack dogs’ do the dirty work of signaling to Russian nationalists that he’s on top of things.” 

The Consequences 


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Lagadec said, “the consequences of Sweden joining NATO are in some ways even more dire for Russia” than Finland’s membership, since “the move would complete the transformation of the Baltic Sea into a “NATO lake.”

Turkey’s Decision 

Following the decision that Turkey made on Tuesday, Hungary is the only NATO member still holding out support for Sweden.   

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Under the leadership of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, is often portrayed as a Putin ally.

Implications For The Nation

Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary-General said in a statement to NATO, “I also count on Hungary to complete its national ratification as soon as possible,” 

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“Sweden has fulfilled its commitments. Sweden’s membership makes NATO stronger and all of us safer.”

Parliament In Hungary 

The timing of when the Hungarian parliament, which is currently in recess until mid-February, 

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will address Sweden’s membership remains uncertain.


Ulf Kristersson, the Swedish Prime Minister expressed his joy over Turkey’s vote in a social media post on X, previously known as Twitter,

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stating that it marked a crucial step for his country and “one step closer to becoming a full member of NATO.”

Geopolitical Interest

The month prior, 

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Putin emphasized that he was “interested in developing relations” with NATO members and had “no reason” and “no geopolitical interest” to “fight with” member states.

No Credibility

A United States-based think tank, The Institute for the Study of War (ISW), disregarded the remarks made at the time, 

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Contendingthat Putin’s argument lacked credibility because of “the threats he and Kremlin pundits have recently been making against NATO member states.”

Future Escalations 

A ISW report revealed,  

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Putin’s recent comments regarding the Baltic Sea were interpreted as “to set information conditions” for “future escalations” that could possibly undermine and eventually break apart NATO.