Putin sets information conditions for escalation against Baltic countries - ISW

Putin sets information conditions for escalation against Baltic countries - ISW

Russian President Vladimir Putin has notably amplified a longstanding Kremlin effort to set information conditions for future escalations against the Baltic countries, likely as part of his wider effort to weaken NATO.

The Washington-based Institute for the Study of War said this in its new report, according to Ukrinform.

It is noted that Putin claimed on January 16 that Latvia and other Baltic states are “throwing [ethnic] Russian people” out of their countries and that this situation “directly affects [Russia’s] security.”

“Putin has long employed an expansive definition of Russia’s sovereignty and trivialized the sovereignty of former Soviet republics, and Russia has long claimed that it has the right to protect its ‘compatriots abroad,’ including ethnic Russians and Russian speakers beyond Russia’s borders,” the report says.

Read also: Russia may be forming air assault brigades for landings in Ukrainian rear - ISW

ISW analysts stress that they have not observed any indication that a Russian attack against the Baltics is imminent or likely, but “Putin may be setting information conditions for future aggressive Russian actions abroad under the pretext of protecting its compatriots.”

ISW analysts also remind that Putin recently threatened Finland in mid-December 2023 and reiterated a world view illustrating that he continues “to pursue demanded changes to the NATO alliance that would amount to dismantling it.”

As reported by Ukrinform, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned there would be “problems” in relations with Finland after it joined NATO.

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