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Swedish Towns Told To ‘Make Preparations Regarding The Threat Of War And Conflict’ With Russia

Russia's President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev attend a Victory Day parade at the Red Square in Moscow. PHOTO: AFP

By Richard Orange | 15 December 2016

THE TELEGRAPH — Sweden’s towns and villages have been ordered to make preparations for a possible military attack in the latest sign of the country’s growing anxiety at its newly belligerent Russian neighbour.

The country’s Civil Contingency Agency (MSB) last week sent a letter to local authorities across the country asking them to maintain operations centres in underground bunkers, ensure that a system of emergency sirens is in place, and to be open to cooperating on war exercises with the Swedish Armed Forces.

A squad from Skaraborg Armoured Regiment training on the island of Gotland in the Baltic outside Visby’s 13th century city wall on September 14. In March 2015, Russia carried out a large-scale training exercise with up to 33,000 soldiers, which included the capture of Gotland as part of its scenario PHOTO: TT News Agency/Reuters/Soren Anderson

“In a state of war,  civil defence for municipalities is no different from any of the other services they should provide,” the letter read, instructing local governments to “ensure their ability to maintain their functions during disturbed situations, and at the most extreme, in a war scenario.”

The dramatic call comes as Sweden returns to the Total Defence Strategy it maintained during the Cold War, reconstituting its old coastal anti-ship missile system, placing an armoured division on the exposed Baltic island of Gotland, and making plans to restart compulsory conscription as early as 2018. […]

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