US approves missile sale to Sweden amid Russian naval drills in Baltic Sea

On 23 February, the US State Department has approved a $3.2 billion sale of the air and missile defence (AMD) Patriot system to Sweden, who in November 2017 expressed its interest in this regard. The news came after Russia launched naval "combat mission" drills on 20 February, involving helicopters, warplanes, and more than 20 warships and missile vessels.

On 5 February it became known that Russia has deployed nuclear-capable Iskander missiles in its Kaliningrad exclave on a permanent basis, after moving them in the area only temporarily in the past. Another Baltic stakeholder, Poland, is set to acquire its own Patriot system with the latest configuration as well as Romania. Swedish concerns and its AMD program were just like those Poland and Romania likely triggered by the Russian aggression in Ukraine. Sweden and Finland, both neutral and sharing a common history, have since then strengthened their ties with the Alliance and began the reorganisation of their armed forces.


About author: Mihai Turcanu


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