Sweden OKs Ukraine Use of Swedish Weapons to Strike Deep Into Russia.

Ukrainian soldiers using a Swedish-British next generation light anti-tank weapon. Photo by Anatolii Stepanov.

Sweden has permitted Ukraine to use its donated military weapons to strike deep into Russia — a bold move seen as an attempt to influence other nations to do the same.

Kyiv has long called for greater freedom to hit targets in Russia by lifting the restrictions imposed by Western nations on their donated weapons.

While some have quietly granted the request, Ukraine’s most important backers such as the US are still hesitant because of the possibility it could cause an escalation of the conflict.

In an interview with Swedish newspaper Hallandsposten, Defense Minister Pål Jonson said Kyiv has been exposed to an “unprovoked and illegal war of aggression” by Russia.

He further stated that the war-ravaged nation has the right to defend itself by all means, even if it involves striking enemy territory.

“As long as the military actions comply with the laws of war, Sweden stands behind international law and Ukraine’s right to defend itself,” Jonson stressed.

Swedish Weapons in Ukraine
Since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, Sweden has sent 37 billion Swedish kronor ($3.5 billion) in military aid to the nation.

This makes Stockholm the ninth biggest donor, with the US still topping the list.

Among the weapons it sent were Archer self-propelled howitzers, anti-ship missiles, and anti-tank launchers.

The Scandinavian nation has also provided ammunition and spare parts for its previously donated weapon systems.

Last week, the Swedish government announced it is allotting 75 billion Swedish kronor ($7 billion) of military support to Kyiv over the next three years.

‘No’ for Germany, Italy
Over the weekend, NATO Chief Jens Stoltenberg urged the alliance’s members to ease their prohibitions on using weapons they supplied to Ukraine.

He argued that if the war-ravaged nation is denied the right to hit targets inside Russia, it would be hard for the country to defend itself.

Despite his call, Italy remained firm on its decision, saying the country “is not at war with anyone.”

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz also opposed the broader use of weapons provided by Berlin as it could turn the conflict into a “major war.”