Sweden adjusts to rising tensions in the High North, defensenews.com

Peter Hultqvist,

[…] Our long-term interests in the Arctic are peace and stability, the climate, and opportunities for the people who live in the Arctic — all of which demand a close cooperation with all Arctic nations, based on and with respect for international law. Based on these interests, Sweden is currently renewing its Arctic strategy.

Sweden puts a high value in the constructive cooperation between the countries of the Arctic Council: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the U.S. Here, fruitful cooperation is ongoing on many non-security-related matters, which contributes to confidence-building in the region. Sweden is keen to maintain and develop this cooperation. Still, we need to consider the possible implications of a military buildup in the Arctic region, and we need to strive to avoid excessive militarization of the region. […]

On a military level, Nordic states have a long history of cooperation in the Nordic Defence Cooperation. Every other year, we conduct the biannual air exercise “Arctic Challenge Exercise” in the northern parts of Finland, Norway and Sweden. Together with the U.S., the Nordic air forces have developed this to a flag-level exercise with more than 100 fighters from more than 10 nations. This is something beyond a regular military exercise. The Nordic nations and the U.S. have a shared interest in addressing security in the North Atlantic Ocean and the Arctic. […]

As for the Swedish upcoming defense bill for 2021-2025, we are looking to increase our Arctic capabilities. For example, a new Ranger regiment will open in Arvidsjaur. We also need to build a stronger and larger Army, focusing on brigade capability, endurance and better operational balance between support and combat units. Läs artikel