On April 4, 2023, it was officially declared that all the legal procedures related to Finland becoming a NATO member were completed.
As we have warned on multiple occasions, the Russian Federation will have to respond with military-technical, as well as other measures in order to address national security threats arising from Finland joining NATO. Specific decisions regarding the build-up of defence capabilities along Russia’s northwestern borders will depend on the specific terms on which Finland joins NATO, including the deployment of NATO’s military infrastructure and offensive weapons on its territory.
The line of contact between NATO and the Russian Federation’s border has more than doubled. This constitutes a major shift for Northern Europe, which used to be one of the most stable regions in the world. The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation has made another step to move closer to the territory of Russia.
There was a time when Finland intentionally opted for military non-alignment after World War II. In the wake of the most devastating military conflict in human history, in which Finland was an ally of Nazi Germany, the Finnish leaders made a wise decision by placing pragmatic and mutually beneficial cooperation with their neighbours at the core of their national policy, based on the principle of refraining from joining any military alliances.
By joining NATO, Finland has given up on its unique identity and lost its independence, which for decades gave it a special status in international affairs. Helsinki’s policy of military non-alignment has long served its national interests and was a major confidence-building factor in the Baltic region and across the European continent. But now all this has become a thing of the past. Finland became a minor NATO member without the possibility to influence any decisions. It has lost its ability to have a say in international affairs.
History will tell whether Finland needed to take this ill-conceived step, undertaken by the country’s government without taking into consideration what the people think about it by holding a referendum and carefully examining the consequences of NATO membership. We strongly believe that this is the case. Make no mistake, Finland’s accession to NATO will have a negative effect on the bilateral relations between Russia and Finland.