“You (Russia) caused this. Look in the mirror,” Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said this week.
Finland’s leaders Thursday came out in favor of applying to join NATO, and Sweden is expected to do the same within days, in a historic realignment of Europe’s political and military alliances, just 2 1/2 months after Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine sent a shiver of fear through Moscow’s neighbors, AP reports.
The Kremlin reacted by warning it will be forced to take retaliatory “military-technical” steps.
The decision came as Russian forces pounded areas in central and eastern Ukraine, including the last pocket of resistance in Mariupol, as part its offensive to take the vital industrial Donbas region, while Ukraine recaptured some towns and villages in the country’s northeast.
Finland’s president and prime minister said their country should immediately apply for membership in NATO, the military defense pact founded in part to counter the Soviet Union at the end of World War Two.
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