Foreign policy Former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt in Helsinki: The United States is focusing on China instead of Europe

Speaking at the Jaakko Iloniemi Lecture event, Carl Bildt hopes that the EU will give the green light to Ukraine, Moldova and “maybe one day, but not immediately” to Belarus.

European must take more responsibility for its own security, as the main focus of US foreign policy is on China. That is what the former Swedish Prime Minister said Carl Bildt on Monday in Helsinki.

“We should be aware that the United States will be primarily busy with China,” Bildt said at the Jaakko Iloniemi Lecture event.

He referred to the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to last week’s statement that China is a major threat to order in the world.

“I wouldn’t have said that myself. Russia would have been higher on my own list when it comes to causing instability in the world. But that is a priority for Americans, ”Bildt said.

The Jaakko Iloniemi Lecture event was organized by the Finnish Atlantic Society, the Business Delegation EVA and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The event honored the Minister Jaakko Iloniemi 90th birthday.

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Bildt does not believe that Finland and Sweden made their NATO decision for fear of an immediate military threat to Russia.

“It can even be said that such a threat seems even less likely in the next few years than before. Both militarily and economically, Russia will be significantly weaker than we would have previously expected, ”Bildt said.

According to Bildt, while Russia is weaker, it is also more desperate and therefore more dangerous. That is why it is necessary for Finland and Sweden to co-operate with each other, between the Nordic countries and the West, Bildt said.

“A few decades ago, we hoped that Europe would be surrounded by friends. Now we see the risk of being surrounded by fire. ”

Bildt also spoke positively about Ukraine’s possible membership of the EU. According to him, EU membership and the process towards it will bring Ukraine political and economic stability.

“I think the way forward should be clear. We need to give Ukraine a political perspective, help with the huge task of reconstruction and assist with the political and economic change that EU membership would require, ”Bildt said.

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He also added Moldova and “maybe one day, but not immediately” Belarus to the list. According to him, this is also the key to Russia’s future.

“As long as Russia tries to rebuild its empire, it will drift even deeper into isolation, conflict and crisis.”

At the event the President of the Republic also spoke Sauli Niinistö. He congratulated Jaakko Iloniemi and praised his experience and life’s work. He said he had corresponded with Iloniemi throughout his presidency.

Niinistö described Iloniemi as, among other things, a tactful, logical and fact-based dissertation.

Iloniemi is a long-standing social figure, including the former CEO and Ambassador of Eva and the President of the Finnish Atlantic Society. He himself emphasized, among other things, that the people now have more opportunities to understand foreign policy relations.

An economic influencer also spoke at the event Björn Wahlroos.

Iloniemi’s birthday interview published in the HS on Sunday. He is too recently released biography book.

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