Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson told parliament at the start of the debate that she sees "a historic change in our country's security policy line."

Sweden has joined Finland in deciding to apply to join the NATO military alliance in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as President Vladimir Putin said Moscow will “certainly” react to the alliance’s expected enlargement into the two Nordic countries, RFE RL Reports.

“The government has decided to inform NATO that Sweden wants to become a member of the alliance. Sweden’s NATO ambassador will shortly inform NATO,” Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson told reporters on May 16, effectively ending two centuries of military nonalliance for the country.

The move comes a day after Nordic neighbor Finland, which shares a 1,300-kilometer border with Russia, made a similar announcement. Finland has remained neutral in the postwar era after losing some 10 percent of its territory to the Soviet Union.

Both countries have moved closer to joining NATO amid growing concern at home over Russia’s military aggression.

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