(Bloomberg) -- Sweden’s potential NATO entry would lower the risk of a Russian attack, according to a policy report commissioned by parliament that fell short of directly endorsing membership in the defense alliance.

The 43-page review concluded that joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization would act as a deterrent, stressing the importance of coordination with neighboring Finland.

Without membership “Sweden would lack the security guarantees that a NATO membership provides, which potentially cold be associated with a lower risk for unilateral Russian actions against Swedish territory in the early stages of a conflict, for example trying to gain control over Gotland,” the report said.

The review also said that membership “would raise the threshold for military conflicts and thereby provide a deterrent to conflict in Northern Europe.” All of Sweden’s political parties, save for the Green Party and the Left Party, supported the report’s conclusions about the defense alliance.

Read a QuickTake on How Russia Pushed Finland and Sweden Toward NATO

These findings are now expected to inform the decision of Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson, who said she will not reach a conclusion until the security report was completed. Her party, the Social Democrats, plans to announce a decision on applying for NATO membership on Sunday, with a special debate scheduled in parliament the following day.

Support for membership from the ruling party, which for decades has been strong opponents of joining any military bloc, would mean there is an overwhelming majority in parliament in favor of membership in the 30-nation alliance.

Were the government of Andersson to file a formal application on Monday it would mark a momentous policy shift for both the Social Democrats and Sweden as a whole. The biggest Nordic nation, which leaned on a neutrality policy to stay out of two world wars, has officially been militarily non-aligned since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

But there has been a sea change in public opinion following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, with 53% of Swedes now in favor of joining NATO, compared with 37% in January, according to a Novus poll published this week. That mirrors developments in neighboring Finland, which is also seeking to formalize the process around an application in the coming days.


(Adds further commentary from report. An earlier version of this story corrected the spelling of Sweden.)

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