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US B-52 Bombers Over Sweden to Send Moscow a 'Security Political Signal'2015-05-23 01:50
Sweden is doing its best to send Moscow a "security political signal." The country's armed forces are getting set to take part in two NATO military exercises next week, including an exercise featuring two American B-52 strategic bombers flying from the US to simulate the dropping of naval mines on the Swedish coast, Radio Sweden reports.
Debating the exercise in the country's parliament, ruling coalition Green Party MPs expressed their unease over the presence of the bombers, with party foreign policy spokesman Walter Mutt saying that the B-52 is associated with the Vietnam War in the minds of many Swedes.
Commenting on the exercises, military spokesman Major General Karl Engelbrektson noted that in addition to its efforts to work out "different operative capabilities," they are also meant to send "clear security political signals that we do these things together with others." Engelbrektson emphasized that "how Russia interprets that, they can decide for themselves."
Last week, Swedish personnel began their participation in Open Spirit 2015, a NATO-led naval exercise in the territorial waters of Estonia involving the search for unexploded naval ordnance left over from the first and second world wars.