The threatening launch was Russia’s first reaction to the news that Finland and Sweden are preparing to abandon their neutrality and join NATO.
Moscow had long warned that such a move was interpreted by it as a hostile move and had moved troops to the border in an attempt to intimidate Finland.
In the midst of this “explosive” climate, possible “retaliation” and “responses” from Moscow may include the interruption of gas supplies to Finland.
A Finnish newspaper reported that Russia sees Finland’s imminent accession to NATO as a threat, which is why it has already warned in the first phase that it will cut off gas supplies.
According to the Iltalehti newspaper, Finnish politicians have been warned of Russia’s move to cut off gas supplies, citing unnamed sources.
Typical is the reaction of Russia’s Deputy Ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polanski, who, speaking to the British magazine “UnHerd”, stressed that “Helsinki and Stockholm know that once they join NATO, there will be some moves from the Russian side. “If there are NATO units in these territories, these territories will become a target – or a possible target – for a strike.”
“NATO is a very hostile bloc to us, it is an enemy, and NATO itself has acknowledged that Russia is the enemy. “It means that Finland and Sweden suddenly, instead of neutral countries, become part of the enemy and face all the dangers,” Polanski said threateningly.
Russia threatens with nuclear weapons
Even stronger was the reaction from Dmitry Medvedev, who warned the West of the danger of an “open conflict” between Moscow and NATO, which could escalate into nuclear war.
In the same vein yesterday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peshkov described Finland’s accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization as a “clear threat” to his country, explaining that Russia would analyze the new data and take steps to balance it. ensuring our security “.
Western support in Finland – Sweden
For its part, however, the West supports Finland and Sweden and is on their side for the forthcoming NATO membership, with the first reactions perceived as positive.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg himself has pledged that Finland’s accession process will be quick and smooth.
In the same vein as the NATO leader, its members US Senate were in favor of Finland’s accession to NATO and made similar commitments to those of Stoltenberg. Thus, top Democrats and Republicans in the US Senate have pledged to support Finland and Sweden’s NATO accession process.
Olaf Solz and Emanuel Macron also expressed their support for Finland’s accession. The German chancellor welcomed Finland’s decision to apply for NATO membership, assuring his Finnish counterpart of the full support of the federal government, while according to Elize, the French president said he fully supported Finland’s choice.
Denmark has also announced that it will push for a speedy Finnish accession process to NATO, according to Danish Prime Minister Mete Frederiksen. In addition, Charles Michel spoke about a historic step that will strengthen European security.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said Finland’s accession to NATO would be historic, speaking to MSNBC in a televised interview on Thursday, adding that it would not be difficult for the country to join the military alliance. A British government spokesman also said the United Kingdom was “fully committed to NATO’s open door policy” and that the only threatening behavior in Europe was Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Intervention by Draghi
At the same time, however, the Italian prime minister Mario Draghi appeared particularly troubledeven calling on Joe Biden to call Vladimir Putin to end the war in Ukraine.
After his return from the US, at yesterday’s cabinet meeting, Mario Draghi stressed that in order to end the war in Ukraine, everyone must sit at the same table, starting with Russia and the US.
According to the online edition of the newspaper “La Repubblica”, the Italian technocratic prime minister added that “in this context, Joe Biden must call Putin.”