Anti-NATO Protests Sweep Across Sweden

In late April, thousands of individuals demonstrated across Sweden to protest the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the country’s potential ascension into NATO. 

Protesters held placards and banners that read, “No to NATO”, and “NATO’s war will get our children killed for a dollar.”  Demonstrators in 17 cities urged elected officials to stick to the country’s traditional foreign policy courses, which consists of eschewing military alliances and maintaining neutrality.

On April 29, 2023, roughly 2,500 people went out to protest and subsequently marched towards Götaplatsen, which impacted multiple public transport lines citywide.

On top of that, demonstrators protested against the Aurora 23 military exercise, an event where 26,000 participants, predominantly from NATO member states, have partnered up with Swedish armed forces to conduct this exercise. This military exercise was designed to stave off a military attack on Sweden. 

On March 22, the Swedish parliament (Riksdagen) voted in favor of the country joining NATO. Sweden joined its neighbor Finland by filing an application to NATO right after Russia launched its special military operation on February 24, 2022. On March 31, 2023, all NATO members ratified Finland’s membership. However, Hungary and Turkey have yet to ratify Sweden’s membership. 

Swedish citizens have every reason to protest NATO’s machinations to absorb into its fold. Joining NATO will only make Sweden’s security situation deteriorate as it will likely be used as a sacrificial lamb against Russia. The Swedes should continue protesting against their political class’s disastrous policies and maintain the country’s neutrality.

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