22bet betting,betis 365,phone pe wallet to bank transfer,Why are Finland and Sweden moving fast to join NATO and where will this lead?
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Finland’s leaders said today that the country would apply to NATO “without delay”, prompting Russia to warn of “retaliatory steps” it would be forced to take in such a case.
Finland's President Sauli Niinisto and Prime Minister Sanna Marin announced in a joint statement on Thursday that: “NATO membership would strengthen Finland’s security. As a member of NATO, Finland would strengthen the entire defence alliance.”
“Finland must apply for NATO membership without delay. We hope that the national steps still needed to make this decision will be taken rapidly within the next few days.”
Both Finland and Sweden are expected to formally announce their decision on Sunday.
The decision for both Nordic nations to join the NATO, an intergovernmental military organisation that was formed in the Cold War era, is significant. From neutrality, both adopted non alignment in 1995 when they joined the European Union.
Sweden has not fought a war 200 years and even downsized its military since the end of cold war. Meanwhile, Finland relives a painful history as it watches the crisis unfold in its neighbourhood. The country had held out against a Soviet invasion in 1939 fighting a fierce battle, but losing 10% of its territory in the wake of the bloodshed.
Both countries have reasons to fear from Russian belligerence, Finland more so as it shares a 1,300 km border with the former. Joining NATO would bring them under the protection of Article 5, which guarantees military intervention from other members if attacked by an adversary.
As Europe stares at uncertainty amid the Ukrainian war, Finland and Sweden feel their common destiny lies with NATO. The two countries know that their military defences are not strong enough, even combined, to thwart a Russian attack. And as Putin displayed his unreliability, launching a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Nordic countries feel it is time to turn toward a reliable bloc.
Finland’s decision to speed up the process of joining comes a day after UK PM Boris Johnson’s visit. The U.K. pledged on Wednesday to come to the aid of Sweden and Finland if the two Nordic nations came under attack.
Reacting to the development today, Russia said in a statement: “Finland’s accession to Nato will cause serious damage to bilateral Russian-Finnish relations and the maintaining of stability and security in the Northern European region.”
“Russia will be forced to take retaliatory steps, both of a military-technical and other nature, in order to neutralise the threats to its national security that arise from this,” it said.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russian response would depend on “how this expansion process plays out, the extent to which military infrastructure moves closer to our borders.”
Putin had bristled at Ukraine’s negotiations with NATO, launching the invasion to push back the alliance and its troops from Russian borders. NATO says its actions are defensive, but Putin considers it an existential threat. NATO has not sent troops to intervene in Ukraine but member countries have provided military aid that is helping the country defend itself against a much more mighty regional power for over 2 months now.
Security analysts feel Finland and Sweden joining NATO would act as deterrence to Russia. On the other hand, if Russia were to attack the two nations and NATO did not come to their aid, Putin can prove that it is but an artificial alliance.
It should be noted that Finland and Sweden have been a NATO partner, sharing intelligence with them and even conducting military exercises alongside them
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has publicly said the Nordic countries would be welcomed into the alliance. “If they decide to apply, Finland and Sweden will be warmly welcomed, and I expect that process to go quickly,” Stoltenberg said. He also said that the two nations would be given protection under NATO from the time they apply to join the bloc and until their membership is finalised.
Joining the NATO is usually a years-long or a months-long process, but it seems that the membership of Finland and Sweden could be ratified faster and in the interim period an arrangement made to defend them against Russia.
Stoltenberg has said that the two already meet standards for “political, democratic, civilian control over the security institutions and the armed forces.”
Any potential membership is discussed with NATO leaders and all would need to approve, besides in US, two-thirds majority of senators would have to be in favour.