On Wednesday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced that Finland and Sweden have officially applied to join NATO after being spurred to during the Ukraine-Russia conflict.
“I warmly welcome the requests by Finland and Sweden to join NATO. You are our closest partners,” Stoltenberg told the press after he received their application. See the video below of their official acceptance.
The move is expected to upset Russia. Watch the moment below.
If the application goes as planned, then the two Nordic countries will become members in a only a few months. This process includes the input of all 30 of the member countries and is expected to take two weeks. One country in particular has said they will vote no.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has shown reservations about Finland and Sweden joining the pact. On Thursday, Turkey announced their plans to reject the bid and accused the two countries of being “guesthouses for terror organizations.”
Below is Erdogan expressing that his country will not approve Sweden and Finland joining NATO.
“We told relevant friends that we will say no to Sweden’s and Finland’s entry into NATO and we will continue our path like that,” he said during a speech to students in Ankara, Turkey.
Turkey is referring to the Nordic countries harboring members of the Kurdistan’s Workers Party, or PKK, which has sought independence from Turkey and has been in armed skirmishes with country for decades. The PKK is an official terrorist organization in Turkey, the U.S., and the E.U.
Turkey has been part of NATO since 1952, three years after it was created in 1949.
If all objections are overcome, the countries will become members with a couple of months. It’s usually a 12 month acceptance. NATO is seeking to move quicker with this application because of the threats from Russia after their invasion of Ukraine.
Public polling in Finland and Sweden shows that the move to join NATO is overwhelmingly popular right now.
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