NATO PA welcomes Finland as full member

04 April 2023

The President of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly (NATO PA), Joëlle Garriaud-Maylam (France), released the following statement upon the accession of Finland to NATO:

“Earlier today, Finland’s flag was raised outside NATO Headquarters, a ceremony I was honoured to attend. Exactly 74 years after the Washington Treaty was signed between just 12 founding members, Finland has thus become NATO’s 31st Ally. With this, Finland also becomes a full member of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

I wholeheartedly congratulate our Finnish friends for becoming part of our unique transatlantic family. 

Russia’s unprovoked, unjustified and brutal war of aggression against Ukraine prompted Finland to seek NATO membership, after a thorough debate across Finnish society and with near unanimity in parliament.

Finland shares the Alliance’s democratic values, its commitment to the rules-based international order and the right of each nation to determine its own future. Ever since Finland became a NATO PA Associate Member in 1998, Finnish parliamentarians have demonstrated these convictions actively and wholeheartedly.

Today’s accession is also a recognition of Finland’s commitment to Euro-Atlantic security and proven readiness and ability to take on the obligations of NATO membership. Finland’s membership of NATO will make our Alliance so much stronger.

The NATO PA is proud to have contributed to this historic accession process. I would like to thank all Allied parliaments for their ratification. The NATO PA will be privileged to welcome Finland’s delegation as full members at the NATO PA’s next meeting. 

Sweden handed in its application at the same time as Finland. Assembly members are committed to continue encouraging prompt ratification of Sweden’s accession in all Allied parliaments.”

Finland and Sweden simultaneously handed their official letters of application to join NATO over to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on 18 May 2022. NATO Heads of State and Government extended an invitation to Finland and Sweden to join the Alliance at the Madrid Summit on 29 June 2022. The accession protocols for both countries were signed on 5 July 2022 after completion of accession talks. These protocols were ratified by all Allies, according to their national procedures. As it has done with past accessions, the NATO PA, which brings together leading members of parliament from all NATO member countries, has been monitoring and encouraging prompt ratification of Finland’s accession in Allied parliaments and will continue to do so until Sweden joins the Alliance.

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