Why can Finland become a NATO member?

Finland and Sweden actually wanted to join NATO “hand in hand”. In May they jointly applied for membership in the military alliance.

But unlike Helsinki, Stockholm has since floundered and, according to the Turkish interpretation, did not meet the terms of the tripartite NATO agreement. Now Finland is moving forward.

In Helsinki on Tuesday, parliament debated a proposed law on NATO membership, with the Foreign Affairs Committee apparently recommending its early adoption. But two left-wing members of parliament, Markus Mustajärvi and Johannes Yrttiaho, introduced an alternative plan.

NATO membership vote on Wednesday

The Finnish left-wing party Vasemmistoliitto has always refused to join the military alliance and only changed its position after the start of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine. As it now shows, only with fear.

Mustajärvi and Yrttiaho criticize that the Finnish position on the deployment of nuclear weapons should be clarified in the draft. Because the Atomic Energy Act prohibits both the production and import of nuclear weapons. It should be enshrined in law as a condition for joining NATO.

So Parliament will have to vote on Wednesday afternoon. A simple majority is required to pass legislation. Domestically, this would pave the way for NATO.

The legislation was originally planned to be drafted after the general election in April. With the early result, Helsinki now avoids dragging out the next procedure – with regime change seen as likely as early as April.

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At the same time, Finland is increasing pressure on NATO members Hungary and Turkey, signaling that we are ready when you are.

Neither country has yet approved the membership applications of Sweden and Finland. Ankara has been particularly harsh in recent months, criticizing Stockholm and expecting the extradition of dozens of Kurdish terrorists and an end to the activities of Kurdish groups in Sweden.

Next week, representatives from the three countries will meet again in Brussels after weeks of deadlock to continue talks on the alliance’s northern expansion at NATO headquarters. NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg, who visited Helsinki ahead of Tuesday’s parliamentary debate, made it clear that he believed Turkish demands had been met in both Finland and Sweden. He expects to welcome both countries into the “big NATO family” soon.

An early vote now allows Finland to join NATO independently. In recent weeks, the country has grown increasingly impatient, and strained relations between Sweden and Turkey make Ankara’s approval unlikely for the two Scandinavian countries.

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A current one According to a survey by the Finnish newspaper Ilta-Sanomat, more and more Finns are willing to go it alone: ​​53 percent favor joining without neighboring Sweden. From Finland’s point of view, the country needs NATO membership more urgently than Sweden because of its 1,300 km long border with Russia.

A parliamentary debate in Budapest also begins this Wednesday.A vote on NATO’s northern expansion has been stalled since the summer. Officially, the country initially wanted to adopt anti-corruption reforms demanded by the European Union. A decision on the NATO process is now expected in the second half of March.

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán maintains friendly relations with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who last weekend expressed concern about the Scandinavians joining NATO for the first time. In the past, Finland and Sweden have spread “blatant lies” about their country’s rule of law.

A remarkable moment after months of silence. The EU froze billions in payments in December because of the country’s lack of rule of law, and Sweden took over the presidency of the EU Council in January. One of the key points is the rule of law as a European foundation.

In June, EU member states will discuss it in Stockholm. It must also be a question of how the Union – under Swedish leadership – intends to proceed with Hungary. It cannot be ruled out that Hungary, like Turkey, will use NATO membership tactically.

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