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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Finland officially became a member of NATO. World leaders comment

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After Finland officially became the 31st member of NATO, its accession to the North Atlantic Alliance is commented on by world leaders. Satisfaction was expressed, among others, by French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. “Today we are more united than ever,” US President Joe Biden said in a statement. Congratulations were also sent by the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz assessed that this was “good news, beneficial for transatlantic security”.

Finland officially became the 31st member of NATO. The accession documents were handed over to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. The flag of Finland was raised on the mast in front of NATO headquarters.

READ MORE: Finland 31st member of NATO. What does this mean for her and the rest of Europe?

“I congratulate Finland and its President Sauli Niinisto on joining NATO on the 74th anniversary of the founding of the Alliance. In the face of Russian aggression, the Alliance has become the only effective guarantee of security in the region,” the Ukrainian president wrote on social media Volodymyr Zelensky.

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“We hope that the NATO summit in Vilnius (scheduled for July 11-12 – ed.) will bring Ukraine closer to our common Euro-Atlantic goal,” he added.

Scholz: This is good news for our safety

The chancellor of Germany also spoke Olaf Scholz. “Finland is now a member of NATO – good news for transatlantic security,” he tweeted.

“Together with Finland, our defense alliance is growing by a strong friend,” stressed the Chancellor, while assuring “full support” for Sweden’s expected accession to NATO.

Macron: We welcome Finland to NATO and look forward to welcoming Sweden

“Welcome to NATO, Finland! I hope that soon we will also welcome our Swedish friends,” wrote the French president Emmanuel Macron.

British Prime Minister and Foreign Minister: Finland’s accession to NATO strengthens the Alliance

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Foreign Minister James Cleverly also expressed their satisfaction.

“This is a historic day for Finland and for NATO. Its accession has made our Alliance stronger and each of us safer. All NATO members must now take the necessary steps to welcome Sweden too, so that we can stand together as one Alliance to defend freedom in Europe and around the world,” Sunak said in a statement.

“Today will go down in the history books of NATO as a defensive alliance. Strong with the strength of 31 countries, we welcome Finland to the table. Russia thought its aggression would divide us. Instead, we are more firmly bound together, determined in our defense of the principles of freedom and the rule of law. that our doors remain open, we will welcome more allies with open arms and continue to push for Sweden’s swift accession,” added Cleverly.

As recalled in a statement from the British government, Great Britain was one of the first countries to ratify the accession applications of Finland and Sweden, signed mutual defense agreements with both countries last year, and both countries are members of the UK-led Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF).

Biden: Putin was wrong to think he could split the alliance

Finland’s accession to NATO was also commented on by the US president Joe Biden. “When Putin launched his brutal aggression against the people of Ukraine, he thought he could divide Europe and NATO. He was wrong. Today we are more united than ever,” Biden wrote in a statement published by the White House. “Together, strengthened by our newest ally Finland, we will continue to safeguard transatlantic security, defend every inch of NATO territory and face every challenge,” he added.

The President stressed that Finland’s accession took place in record time and took less than a year. But he also pointed out that Sweden should also join the alliance.

“Both of these countries are strong democracies with very capable militaries and share our values ​​and vision of the world (…) I hope to see Sweden join NATO as soon as possible and encourage Turkey and Hungary to complete their ratification processes without delay – added the US president.

Finland is officially the 31st member of NATO. The accession documents were handed over to the US Secretary of StatePAP/EPA/JOHANNA GERON / POOL

Head of the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Finland’s membership in NATO is also beneficial for our country

Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billstroem said in Brussels on Tuesday that Finland’s full NATO membership was “beneficial to both our countries.”

– We welcome Finland’s accession to NATO. We would also like to become part of the alliance – it’s no secret. But Finland’s full NATO membership will benefit both countries – both Finland and Sweden, Billstroem said.

He said that the ambition of the Swedish government is to join the alliance at the Vilnius summit scheduled for July.

– We will work tirelessly on it. This is of the utmost importance. (…) Neither the Turkish nor the Hungarian parliament has any reason to delay this process. They should start the ratification process because we have the support of all NATO member states. By receiving an invitation to become a member, we met all the conditions,’ Billstroem pointed out.

President of Lithuania: this will strengthen security in the Baltic Sea region

Finland’s membership in NATO will strengthen security in the Baltic Sea region, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda said on Twitter.

“I called Finnish President Sauli Niinisto to congratulate Finland on officially joining NATO as its 31st member!” Nauseda wrote.

“I look forward to welcoming Finland as a trusted ally at the NATO summit in Vilnius,” added the Lithuanian president.

Prime Minister Karinsz: Finland’s admission to NATO is a historic moment

The Prime Minister of Latvia Krishyanis Karinsh also spoke. “We welcome our close friends, the Finns, to NATO; this is a historic day for the North Atlantic Alliance,” he wrote.

Finland’s accession to NATO means strengthening the Nordic-Baltic region and the Alliance itself, added Karinsz. “We look forward to welcoming Sweden to NATO,” said the Prime Minister of Latvia.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA/JOHANNA GERON / POOL



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