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A neutral country is a state which is neutral towards belligerents in a specific war, or holds itself as permanently neutral in all future conflicts (including avoiding entering into military alliances such as NATO). As a type of non-combatant status, neutral nationals enjoy protection under the law of war from belligerent actions, to a greater extent than other non-combatants such as enemy civilians and prisoners of war.

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  • A neutral country is a state which is neutral towards belligerents in a specific war, or holds itself as permanently neutral in all future conflicts (including avoiding entering into military alliances such as NATO). As a type of non-combatant status, neutral nationals enjoy protection under the law of war from belligerent actions, to a greater extent than other non-combatants such as enemy civilians and prisoners of war.
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  • Neutral country
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  • A neutral country is a state which is neutral towards belligerents in a specific war, or holds itself as permanently neutral in all future conflicts (including avoiding entering into military alliances such as NATO). As a type of non-combatant status, neutral nationals enjoy protection under the law of war from belligerent actions, to a greater extent than other non-combatants such as enemy civilians and prisoners of war. Different countries interpret their neutrality differently. Some, such as Costa Rica, have demilitarized; whereas Switzerland holds to "armed neutrality" in which it deters aggression with a sizeable military while barring itself from foreign deployment. Not all neutral countries avoid any foreign deployment or alliances, however, as Austria, Ireland, Finland and Sweden have active UN peacekeeping forces and a political alliance within the European Union. The traditional Swedish policy is not to participate in military alliances, with the intention of staying neutral in the case of war. Immediately before World War II, the Nordic countries stated their neutrality, but Sweden changed its position to that of non-belligerent at the start of the Winter War. There have been considerable changes to the interpretation of neutral conduct over the past centuries. During the Cold War another European country, Yugoslavia, claimed military and ideological neutrality, and that is continued by its successor, Serbia.
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