NATO formally begins process of ratifying membership of Sweden and Finland

NEWS 05.07.2022 12:20
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Source: Jens Stoltenberg (REUTERS/Johanna Geron)

NATO has formally begun the process of Sweden and Finland’s ascension into the alliance, its secretary general has said.

NATO members on Tuesday will formally “sign the protocols of ascension,” Jens Stoltenberg said in a Brussels press conference, following the NATO summit in Madrid last week where “allied leaders agreed to invite Finland and Sweden to join the Alliance.”

“This is a good day for Finland and Sweden, and a good day for NATO. With 32 nations around the table, we will be even stronger and our people will be even safer, as we face the biggest security crisis in decades,” he said.

The alliance is open to European democracies “who are ready and willing to contribute to our shared security,” he added.

Finland and Sweden ended their decades of neutrality when they applied to join NATO following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which was met by some opposition from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who accused them of housing Kurdish “terrorist organizations.”

Last week, Turkey dropped its opposition after a joint memorandum was signed between the three countries, underscoring their commitment to fully support each other against threats to their security.

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