(The Moscow Times) As Sweden's navy goes on its sixth day of hunting a suspected Russian submarine, Swedish defense officials announced on Tuesday that they intend to force the mystery vessel, if found, to surface "with armed force, if necessary," the English-language Swedish newspaper The Local reported.
The announcement that Sweden is prepared to force the alleged submarine to the surface with depth charges represents a significant sharpening of rhetoric over what Swedish officials initially described as a maritime courtesy — seeking to help a ship possibly in distress.
Meanwhile, Sweden appears to be engrossed in full-on panic, with the Dagens Nyheter newspaper reporting that over 100 sightings of a suspect vessel have been called in to Swedish authorities in the past day, The Local reported Tuesday. Russia, for its part, has denied any emergency situations involving a submarine. […]
"I think it has to do with signaling that Russia needs to be taken seriously, and that its all part of this effort to create an image that the Russian government is tired of being dismissed, or at least having its security concerns dismissed," Dr. Dmitry Gorenburg, a Harvard naval analyst who also works for the Virginia-based CNA think tank, told The Moscow Times by phone Tuesday. […]
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