400 Swedish soldiers are taking part this week in a naval battle exercise in Finland, as part of an ever closer military co-operation between the two countries.
“We see a great value in this, as it is almost impossible to do an exercise of this scale with just Finnish troops,” says Arvi Tavaila, commander of the Finnish Nyland Brigade.
The exercise is taking place on the southwest island of Hästö-Busö. The Finnish Nyland brigade is a predominantly Swedish-speaking unit, which further helps co-operation, says Patrik Gardesten, who is the regimental commander of the Swedish Marines.
In its statement to parliament presented on Monday, Finland’s new government specifically mentioned an “intensified” defence co-operation with Sweden as a way to increase the security and stability of the Nordic region.
Related stories from around the North:
Canada: New Canadian navy ships to be affiliated with Inuit communities, CBC News
Norway: Norway rearming in Arctic to face new security landscape, The Independent Barents Observer
Russia: Moscow threatens response against Norwegian radar near Russian border, The Independent Barents Observer
Sweden: Over 100 aircraft take part in multinational exercise in Arctic Europe, Radio Sweden
United States: U.S. fighter jets intercept Russian warplanes off Alaska, Radio Canada International