Sweden faces military build-up call after submarine claims

Media reports of a suspected Russian submarine in Swedish waters could pressure the country to spend more on its military, expert says

While Swedish citizens enjoy a high standard of living and efficient national social welfare systems, they could face demands to increase spending on the military following widespread media coverage of allegations a Russian submarine may be in waters off the Stockholm archipelago, an expert says.

Many critics have questioned the veracity and timing of speculation a Russian submarine could be hiding in Swedish territorial waters at a time of heightened global military tensions under the US-led “war on terror”, and also point out it is common knowledge that most developed nations operate fleets of military submarines around the world.

But, in the wake of the allegations, Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has raised the prospect of taxpayers increasing military spending, which currently accounts for one percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product, a modest ratio of national income compared to its European neighbors. Continue reading