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Swedes oppose NATO, but Stockholm never bothered to ask their opinions — Russian diplomat

According to Maria Zakharova, the decision of the cabinet of Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson to join NATO has "polarized Swedish society"

MOSCOW, April 2. /TASS/. Swedish citizens are against the country joining NATO, but the government simply never bothered to ask their opinion, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.

"Three weeks ago, Sweden finally joined NATO. We know that no one asked the Swedes themselves about it, but the other day the Swedish newspaper Goteborgs-Posten published the results of a public opinion poll on how Swedes feel about the country’s membership in the military alliance. The numbers are quite self-explanatory. Swedes were asked about the prospect of Swedish servicemen being sent to participate in NATO combat missions or exercises. Three out of five citizens were against it," the diplomat wrote on her Telegram channel.

According to her, the decision of the cabinet of Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson to join NATO has "polarized Swedish society." "Half of the country is strongly opposed to NATO membership," Zakharova pointed out.

"Sweden’s NATO membership is a risky and costly change of priorities. And, of course, the Swedes do not need it. That is why there was no referendum on membership," she stressed. "Precisely because no one wanted to join NATO, and no one wants to join NATO, except for the Washington-oriented caretaker government in Stockholm," she said.

Hungary's parliament ratified Sweden's NATO membership agreement on February 26, 2024. After Turkey, Hungary was the last NATO country that had not ratified the protocol to approve Sweden's accession to the alliance. Helsinki and Stockholm received formal invitations to join NATO at the North Atlantic Alliance’s summit in Madrid in June 2022. On March 7, the protocol on Sweden's accession to NATO officially took effect, making the country the 32nd member of the alliance.