After Turkey lifts its veto, NATO leaders will decide today to invite Sweden and Finland to the alliance.
This was stated yesterday by Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary General of NATO, speaking at a briefing. “European Truth” quotes him:
“Tomorrow the leaders of the alliance will make a decision on inviting Finland and Sweden to join NATO and become its members.”
Stoltenberg recalled that each country must then ratify the accession protocol in order for NATO expansion to take effect:
“I am absolutely confident that, given the strong commitments contained in the tripartite memorandum, which have only recently been signed by the Presidents of Finland, Sweden and Turkey, the doors (NATO) are open and the accession of Sweden and Finland will indeed take place.”
As a result of talks on Tuesday in Madrid, through the mediation of the Secretary General of the alliance, Turkey agreed to unblock the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO. A memorandum of understanding was signed between the three countries, it contains an obligation to fight against terrorist organizations, as well as to unblock the export of weapons to Ankara. Sweden and Finland applied to join NATO in May. All 30 member countries must agree to the entry, but Turkey has been threatening to veto all this time.
The Russian invasion of the territory of Ukraine has shaken the principle of neutrality of Finland and Sweden, which for decades kept these countries from participating in international conflicts and wars. Their reasons for staying neutral varied greatly, but they were all tied to Russia. The aggression that has united and strengthened the North Atlantic Alliance explains the 180-degree turn in Helsinki and Stockholm from their long-standing traditional policy of neutrality. Sweden, for example, became a neutral country at the beginning of the 19th century, having suffered a serious defeat during the Napoleonic Wars, when it lost many possessions, including Finland, which became part of the Russian Empire.