Vladimir Putin Condemns NATO's 'Imperial Ambitions' As Finland, Sweden Fast-Track Membership

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he has "no problem" with neighbors Finland and Sweden joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), but signaled there might be more tensions in the future.

What Happened: Putin criticized NATO’s "imperial ambitions" and bid to "assert supremacy" while speaking to reporters in the Turkmenistan capital of Ashgabat on Wednesday.

He said, "there is nothing that could bother us about Sweden and Finland joining NATO…If Finland and Sweden wish to, they can join. That's up to them. They can join whatever they want," according to the Daily Mail.

However, he issued fresh warnings to NATO, saying Russia would respond symmetrically to the U.S.-alliance plans of boosting troops on the eastern flank by almost 4,000 compared to March this year.

"If military contingents and military infrastructure were deployed there, we would be obliged to respond symmetrically and raise the same threats for those territories where threats have arisen for us," he said.

Putin added that "the NATO countries' leaders wish to... assert their supremacy, their imperial ambitions."

That came after the Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan agreed with his Finnish and Swedish counterparts on a series of security measures to allow the two Nordic nations to progress in their bid to join NATO.

'Territorial Difference' With Ukraine

Putin tried to defend his action in Ukraine by calling it a "territorial difference."

"We don't have problems with Sweden and Finland as we do with Ukraine," he said.

"We don't have territorial differences…But they should understand that they didn't face any threats before this."

Putin, however, added, "Everything was going fine between us, and now there will be tensions."

Read Next: Vladimir Putin's 'Hardline Mouthpiece' Mocks Boris Johnson: 'Not Macho Enough, Scared To Declare War On Russia'

Photo via Vitalii Vodolazskyi on Shutterstock


Posted In: EurasiaFinlandNATORussia-Ukraine WarSwedenVladimir PutinNewsPoliticsGlobalMediaGeneral

Ad Disclosure: The rate information is obtained by Bankrate from the listed institutions. Bankrate cannot guaranty the accuracy or availability of any rates shown above. Institutions may have different rates on their own websites than those posted on Bankrate.com. The listings that appear on this page are from companies from which this website receives compensation, which may impact how, where, and in what order products appear. This table does not include all companies or all available products.

All rates are subject to change without notice and may vary depending on location. These quotes are from banks, thrifts, and credit unions, some of whom have paid for a link to their own Web site where you can find additional information. Those with a paid link are our Advertisers. Those without a paid link are listings we obtain to improve the consumer shopping experience and are not Advertisers. To receive the Bankrate.com rate from an Advertiser, please identify yourself as a Bankrate customer. Bank and thrift deposits are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Credit union deposits are insured by the National Credit Union Administration.

Consumer Satisfaction: Bankrate attempts to verify the accuracy and availability of its Advertisers' terms through its quality assurance process and requires Advertisers to agree to our Terms and Conditions and to adhere to our Quality Control Program. If you believe that you have received an inaccurate quote or are otherwise not satisfied with the services provided to you by the institution you choose, please click here.

Rate collection and criteria: Click here for more information on rate collection and criteria.