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Finnish railway modernization eases NATO troop deployment to Russian border

Finnish railway modernization eases NATO troop deployment to Russian border Finland is modernizing its infrastructure for deploying troops to Russia (
Author: Maria Kholina

The modernization of Finnish railways and other transportation infrastructure on the border with Sweden will facilitate the NATO's troop deployment, armaments, and equipment transfer from Atlantic ports to the Russian borders, according to Reuters.

It is reported that lectrification and equipment replacement on the railway are taking place, particularly near the city of Kemiärvi. It is located an hour's drive from the Russian border and seven hours from Russian military bases near Murmansk on the Kola Peninsula.

The modernization of the railway in Finland is being carried out between the Swedish city of Haparanda and the Finnish station of Laurila. The railway networks of Norway and Sweden will be connected to the electrified part of the Finnish network. The completion of the project is expected in 2024, with an estimated cost of 37 million euros.

According to Reuters, 96% of goods are currently delivered to Finland by sea. In the event of a conflict between Russia and NATO, the transportation of forces and cargo through the Baltic Sea could be at risk. It is anticipated that the railway corridor could address the potential blocking of Finnish ports on the Baltic Sea by Russia.

Finland and Sweden's NATO membership

Sweden and Finland submitted their applications to join NATO last year, abandoning their policy of military neutrality following Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Finland has become a full member of the Alliance. Sweden's membership applications must be approved by all NATO members, but Turkey and Hungary have not yet given their approval.

Turkey has repeatedly said that Sweden needs to take additional steps against supporters of the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and members of the network that Ankara holds responsible for the attempted mutiny in 2016.

Sweden's new anti-terrorism law came into effect on June 1, but for Ankara, its implementation is more important than the law itself. It calls on Stockholm to halt the activities of the PKK, demonstrations, propaganda funding, and fundraising efforts.