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The US Senate wants to admit Finland and Sweden to NATO

#Senate #admit #Finland #Sweden #NATO

The US Senate on Tuesday took its first step to admit Sweden and Finland into NATO, with bipartisan support for the new allies following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

All 30 NATO members must ratify the two Nordic countries’ accession, but Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan again this week threatened to freeze their bids, despite his approval, during a summit in Madrid in late June.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed a resolution ratifying their membership with near-unanimous support, with almost guarantees that the entire Senate will follow suit in the coming weeks.

The committee’s chairman, Democratic Senator Bob Menendez, called the accession of Finland and Sweden “undoubtedly one of the most momentous foreign policy achievements in recent years”.

“As U.S. foreign policy priorities evolve to reflect a changing world, it goes without saying that the future of the transatlantic partnership will be even more intertwined and integrated thanks to[Russian President Vladimir]Putin’s ruthlessness,” he said he in a statement.

A dissonant note came from Senator Rand Paul, a Republican skeptical about military engagement. He proposed an immediately rejected amendment that would emphasize that only the US Congress has the right to declare war under the Constitution.

Under Article 5 of NATO, any attack on one member of the western alliance – formed in 1949 at the start of the Cold War with the Soviet Union – is considered an attack on all.

Trying not to upset their huge neighbor to the east, Sweden and Finland have balked at joining NATO in the past.

But the mood quickly changed after Russia shocked Europe on February 24 by invading Ukraine, which for years had tried but failed to join NATO.

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#Senate #admit #Finland #Sweden #NATO

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