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Medvedev warns that Russia would strengthen the army in the face of possible NATO membership of Sweden and Finland

Dmitry Medvedev, deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, warned in a statement on Thursday that the Russian military would “more than double” its forces on Russia’s western flank if Sweden and Finland joined NATO.

Ground and air defense forces would be reinforced, he wrote on Telegram, and Russia would deploy “significant naval forces” in the Gulf of Finland.

If Sweden and Finland join NATO, Medevedev added, “it will no longer be possible to talk about a non-nuclear status of the Baltic – the balance must be restored.”

Medvedev, who served as Russia’s president from 2008 to 2012 during a four-year interregnum for Russian President Vladimir Putin’s two-decade rule, has struck a belligerent pose in recent months, despite not being a leading decision maker.

A 2018 report by the Federation of American Scientists concluded that Russia may have significantly upgraded a nuclear weapons storage bunker in Kaliningrad, an enclave of Russian territory between Poland and the Baltic states.


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