Government Approval Close: U.S. to Gain Access to Swedish Military Bases

Written by Camilla Jessen

Jun.18 - 2024 10:19 AM CET

Photo: Jeppe Gustafsson /
Photo: Jeppe Gustafsson /
Sweden is about to finalize an agreement allowing the US military to use 17 of its military bases.

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Sweden is close to approving a defense cooperation agreement (DCA) with the United States that will allow the U.S. military to use 17 Swedish military bases.

This deal, made at the end of last year, is part of a wider strategy to strengthen defense ties across Northern and Eastern Europe, including countries like Finland, Norway, Denmark, the Baltic states, and Poland.

Strengthening Regional Security

The DCA agreement aims to boost both regional and national security, as reported by TV4 Nyheterna.

The 17 bases include airports, military facilities, and combat sites.

This setup will enable quick U.S. support for Sweden in times of crisis and improve NATO's ability to defend the Baltic states and Finland.

An important part of the agreement is Sweden's continued control over its own territory. The Swedish government has ensured that no nuclear weapons can be placed on Swedish soil in peacetime without Sweden's consent.

Foreign Minister Tobias Billström noted that Sweden's stance on this issue is well-known and respected, although it may need to be reconsidered during wartime.

Despite these assurances, the Left Party and the Green Party have raised concerns.

They are worried about the lack of specific rules about nuclear weapons compared to Sweden's agreements with other countries. They are also uneasy about American personnel on Swedish soil being subject to American law instead of Swedish law.

But the agreement allows Sweden, in some cases, to reclaim the right to judge American personnel, maintaining a balance between international cooperation and national laws.

Approval Process

The DCA agreement has political support from six out of eight parties in the Riksdag. If passed, this agreement will be a major milestone in Sweden's defense policy and its relationship with the United States.

Although the government has not yet specified when the necessary legislative changes will be made, today's approval vote is expected to pass after intense debates.