NATO enlargement: Belgium wishes a “swift accession process” for Finland and Sweden

The Belgian government welcomed this Tuesday 17 May Finland's and Sweden's NATO membership applications, as the result of "a democratic process" and "in line with both nation’s sovereign right to choose their own security arrangements".

Belgium has been working closely for more than two decades with these two Scandinavian countries, members of the European Union, the government recalled in a press release issued by the chancellery of Prime Minister Alexander De Croo this Tuesday.

"We share the same values and strongly believe in the rules-based international order and effective multilateralism. By virtue of the mutual assistance clause of the Treaty on the European Union (article 42.7), we are committed to defend and assist each other by all means in our power in case of armed aggression on a Member States territory," highlights the text.

The statement remarks Belgium looks forward to a "swift accession process" and to working with Finland and Sweden as Allies in the North Atlantic Council.

"Together, as members of the transatlantic community, we will stand united and in solidarity to defend the security of the Euro-Atlantic area and of our people, our freedom and the values we share."

Sweden and Finland will send their applications to the alliance headquarters on Wednesday 18 May. The two countries would thus turn the page on decades of neutrality and then of military non-alignment.


© BELGA PHOTO (Henrik MONTGOMERY / TT News Agency / AFP)Sweden's Minister of Foreígn Affairs Ann Linde signs Sweden's application for NATO membership in Stockholm on May 17, 2022.

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