It’s official—Finland will seek to join NATO. The President of Finland and the Ministerial Committee on Foreign and Security Policy decided that after consulting Parliament, Finland will apply for membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
At a news conference Finnish President Sauli Niinistö said, “A lot has happened. This is a historic day. A new era is opening.”
At the press conference, President Niinistö stressed Finland’s right to make its own decisions concerning national security. “The result will be a protected Finland that is part of a stable, strong and responsible Nordic region. We will both receive protection and help protect others in the Baltic region and the entire North Atlantic Treaty Organization.”
Reaction from Canada came quickly.
President Niinistö revealed he held a phone conference with Russian President Putin. He described Putin as calm and said that he did not get any threats, even though President Putin said Finland’s decision to join NATO is a mistake, because Finland has not been under threat. But yesterday Russia cut off electricity exports to Finland claiming non-payment. Finland will make up the difference with imports from neighbouring Sweden, which is expected to follow Finland in applying for NATO membership.