Jan Björklund, leader of Sweden's Liberal Party. Photo: Bertil Enevåg Ericson/TT

Björklund: "Time to defend Sweden's borders"

The Ukraine crisis highlights Sweden's vulnerability in the Baltic Sea, the leader of Sweden's Liberal Party, Jan Björklund, said at a Parliament press conference Tuesday.

Björklund said pumping more money into the Swedish Armed Forces is not sufficient. Instead, he called for a return to "the old doctrine" of defending Sweden's borders.

Russia's conduct in Ukraine today could be repeated in the Baltic states in the future, claimed Björklund. In such a scenario, the Swedish Baltic island of Gotland would be a key territory, he said.

Björklund added that the government led by Sweden's former Social Democrat prime minister, Göran Persson, had made a "big mistake" by pulling military presence on Gotland.

"We do not need more full-time staff, we need the possibility of calling in reservists. We need a combination of full-time staff and reservists," said Björklund, who also argued that events in Ukraine have highlighted the need for Sweden to join Nato.

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