NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Wednesday that the organization plans to move quickly on the membership process for Sweden and Finland.
“I warmly welcome Finland’s and Sweden’s applications for NATO membership. You are our closest partners,” he said. “All allies agree on the importance of NATO enlargement. We all agree that we must stand together, and we all agree that this is a historic moment that we must seize.
As reported by just the news, NATO ambassadors to Sweden and Finland filed the candidacies on Tuesday against the will of Russia, which threatened to respond to such a move. The demands were a direct result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Once the membership process is complete, which is likely to take several months, countries will benefit from NATO’s Article 5 security guarantee, which ensures that an attack on one member is considered an attack on all members.
NATO is determined to speed up what is usually a year-long process, given the potential threat of aggression against the Nordic countries.