Finland and Sweden formally asked to join NATO

Finland and Sweden have officially applied for NATO membership.

Source: Tanjug
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EPA-EFE JOHANNA GERON / POOL
EPA-EFE JOHANNA GERON / POOL

The news was announced by the Secretary General of the Alliance, Jens Stoltenberg, who welcomed the request of Finland and Sweden to join NATO.

"You are our closest partners," Stoltenberg told reporters after receiving letters from the ambassadors of the two countries with a request to join the Alliance, reports AP.

The application for NATO membership now needs to be approved by 30 member states of the Alliance.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has expressed reservations about the accession of Finland and Sweden to the Alliance. If the objections of the Turkish president are overcome, and the accession negotiations go as expected, these two countries could become members of NATO within a few months, according to the AP.

According to the U.S. agency, the accession process usually takes eight to 12 months, but NATO wants the process to be accelerated because of Russia.

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