In an astonishing about-turn, Sweden and Finland will decide whether to join NATO in the coming weeks.

According to the Finnish government, a decision about whether to seek NATO membership will be made “within weeks” while Swedish media reports that its Prime Minister is aiming to apply for membership by late June.

Overturning decades of non-aligned status and neutrality, this shift in position by Sweden and Finland demonstrates how Russia’s war on Ukraine has given the transatlantic defence alliance – whose very existence was being question just two years ago – a renewed sense of purpose.