NATO to 32 countries… 30 member countries sign the Sweden-Finland Accession Protocol

(Berlin = Yonhap News) Correspondent Lee Yul = Ambassadors of 30 North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) member states signed the Protocol of Accession between Sweden and Finland at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium on the 5th (local time), Germany’s Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) ) et al.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg is now able to officially invite Sweden and Finland to join the NATO Alliance.

“This is a truly historic moment for Sweden, Finland and NATO,” Stoltenberg said at a press conference.

The signing ceremony was attended by Swedish Foreign Minister Anne Linde and Finnish Foreign Minister Peka Havisto.

However, the process of ratification by the member states’ parliaments is still pending for final accession. The ratification process is expected to take six to eight months, Germany’s Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) predicted. The German Bundestag is expected to ratify it as early as this week.

Under pressure from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Sweden and Finland applied for NATO membership on May 18. The two countries had maintained a neutral path according to a policy of military non-alignmentism for over 70 years, and decided to join NATO in the wake of the Ukraine War.

Finnish Foreign Minister Peka Havisto, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, and Swedish Foreign Minister Anne Linde pose for a commemorative photo after the joint press conference

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