Russia has warned Finland and Sweden against joining NATO, arguing the move would not bring stability to Europe.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that “the alliance remains a tool geared towards confrontation”.
It comes as US defence officials said Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine has been a “massive strategic blunder” which is likely to bring NATO enlargement.
US officials expect the Nordic neighbours to bid for membership of the alliance, potentially as early as June.
Washington is believed to support the move which would see the Western alliance grow to 32 members. US State Department officials said last week that discussions had taken place between NATO leaders and foreign ministers from Helsinki and Stockholm.
Before it launched its invasion, Russia demanded that the alliance agree to halt any future enlargement, but the war has led to the deployment of more NATO troops on its eastern flank and a rise in public support for Swedish and Finnish membership.