Nordics should consider joint air control in far north, Finnish parliament speaker says

If Finland and neighbouring Sweden's applications for membership in the Western military alliance NATO are successful, the Nordics could for the first time consider organising parts of their defence jointly with their common neighbour Norway which is already a NATO member. "We all three - Sweden, Norway and Finland - have relatively strong airforces and we have to control our borders and airspace," said Matti Vanhanen, discussing NATO and security policy with Norway's Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere at an event organised by Finland's President Sauli Niinisto at his summer residence in Naantali, Finland.


Reuters | Helsinki | Updated: 13-06-2022 15:01 IST | Created: 13-06-2022 14:56 IST
Nordics should consider joint air control in far north, Finnish parliament speaker says
Matti Vanhanen Image Credit: Wikipedia
  • Country:
  • Finland

Finland, Sweden, and Norway should consider organizing their air defense control jointly in territories north of the Arctic Circle in coming years, the speaker of the Finnish parliament said on Monday. If Finland and neighboring Sweden's applications for membership in the Western military alliance NATO are successful, the Nordics could for the first time consider organizing parts of their defense jointly with their common neighbor Norway which is already a NATO member.

"We all three - Sweden, Norway, and Finland - have relatively strong airforces and we have to control our borders and airspace," said Matti Vanhanen, discussing NATO and security policy with Norway's Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere at an event organized by Finland's President Sauli Niinisto at his summer residence in Naantali, Finland. "It would be most natural that in the coming years the controlling of the airspace would be common," said Vanhanen, a former Finnish prime minister.

Finland and Sweden abandoned their traditional policy of neutrality in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February and are seeking to join NATO. Their applications face opposition from Turkey, however, which accuses them of harboring terrorists. Norway's Stoere said he saw room for more Nordic crossborder cooperation in the far north - known as the Cap of the North - in areas beyond defense, such as energy and railways.

"I'm trying to tell my government apparatus that a lot of the measures we have to develop our cross-border relations with Russia we should just shift the focus and do it with Sweden and Finland," he said, giving possible railways from Finland to Norway's northern ports of Tromso and Kirkenes as examples.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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