Finland poised to join Nato on Tuesday

Brussels, Apr 3 (EFE).- Finland is poised to formally join Nato, secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg said Monday.

“This is a historic week. Tomorrow we will welcome Finland as the 31st member of NATO, making Finland safer and our alliance stronger,” Stoltenberg told a press conference.

“We will raise the Finnish flag for the first time here at Nato headquarters,” he added.

“It will be a good day for Finland’s security, for Nordic security and for Nato as a whole.”

The Nato leader said a ceremony marking Finland’s accession would be held on Tuesday, a day that also coincides with the 74th anniversary of the Atlantic alliance’s founding in 1949.

The Nordic nation, which shares Europe’s longest border with Russia, has historically remained neutral but applied to join Nato after Russian forces invaded Ukraine last year.

“It is a historic moment for us. For Finland, the most important objective at the meeting will be to emphasize Nato’s support to Ukraine as Russia continues its illegal aggression,” Finnish foreign minister, Pekka Haavisto, said in a statement.

Turkey was the last Nato country to ratify Finland’s membership application.

Finland applied to join alongside Sweden, but Ankara has blocked Stockholm’s bid due to a dispute over Sweden harboring Kurdish rebels that Turkey wants to try on terror charges.

Stoltenberg said on Monday he was confident that Sweden would soon become a member, saying “all allies agree that Sweden’s accession should be completed quickly.” EFE


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