Statement on NATO membership applications by Finland and Sweden

Finland and Sweden have both decided that they wish to become members of the NATO Alliance, and today they submitted their applications. The Netherlands welcomes and supports their applications for membership wholeheartedly.

Every country has the sovereign right to join alliances and to decide with which countries it wishes to work in order to guarantee its security. Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its acts of aggression in that country, the security situation has changed drastically for both Finland and Sweden and for NATO. This contributed to the decisions by Finland and Sweden, following careful democratic procedures, to each submit an application for accession to NATO.

The Netherlands already works closely with both Finland and Sweden, and stands ready to further enhance military and security cooperation. It goes without saying that the Netherlands will assist Finland and Sweden if the security situation demands it, as laid down in the mutual assistance clause in the Treaty on the European Union and article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations.

Finland and Sweden are already very close partners of NATO. Their accession will strengthen the Alliance. Due to their geographical location, Finland and Sweden will ensure greater stability in the Baltic Sea region, on NATO’s northern flank and throughout the entire Euro-Atlantic area. In addition, Finland and Sweden have sizeable, well-trained armed forces and outstanding military capabilities. The Netherlands will endeavour to welcome Finland and Sweden to the Alliance as soon as possible, in consultation with the relevant Dutch authorities.