Finland and Sweden completed accession talks at NATO Headquarters in Brussels on Monday and the Allies are due to sign the Accession Protocols for the two countries on Tuesday.
Both countries officially confirmed their willingness and ability to meet the political, legal, and military obligations and commitments of NATO membership.
The Finnish delegation was led by Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto and Defence Minister Antti Kaikkonen, the Swedish delegation was led by Foreign Minister Ann Linde.
The meetings for each country were chaired by the NATO Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs and Security Policy, Bettina Cadenbach. The Accession Protocols will then go to all NATO countries for ratification, according to their national procedures.
Last May, Finland and Sweden officially applied to join the NATO alliance at allied headquarters, provoking Russia amid the invasion of Ukraine.
“This is a historic moment, which we must seize,” NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said at a short ceremony in which the Swedish and Finnish ambassadors to the alliance handed over their application letters, each in a white folder embossed with their national flag.
“I warmly welcome requests by Finland and Sweden to join NATO. You are our closest partners, and your membership in NATO will increase our shared security,” Stoltenberg added. The Alliance believes that the accession of Finland and Sweden would hugely strengthen it in the Baltic Sea.