Biden expressed support for the desire of Finland and Sweden to become part of NATO
The US President spoke by telephone with Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson and Finnish President Sauli Niinistö. The latter told his American colleague about further steps taken by Helsinki to join the
US President Joe Biden supports NATO's open door policy and the right of Finland and Sweden to make their own security decisions, the White House said in a statement following a telephone conversation between the head of state and Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson and Finnish President Sauli Niinistö.
The leaders also discussed cooperation between the countries in the field of defense and security, as well as efforts aimed at strengthening transatlantic security.
Niinistö, after talking with Biden, tweeted that he had told him about Helsinki's next steps to join the alliance.
Earlier, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said that Washington would support the applications of Finland and Sweden.
On May 12, Finnish President and Prime Minister Sanna Marin issued a statement that Helsinki should immediately apply to join NATO. According to the Finnish leader, his decision was influenced by Russia's demand from NATO to abandon the advance to the east and the start of a military operation in Ukraine.
On the same day, the Swedish newspaper Expressen reported on Stockholm's plans to apply for NATO membership on Monday, May 16. The next day, the President of Finland is scheduled to visit Sweden, during which he will hold talks with Andersson.
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Helsingin Sanomat wrote that countries plan to apply to NATO at the same time.
The day before, Russian President Vladimir Putin held a meeting with the permanent members of the Security Council, during which “an exchange of views took place on the decision of Finland and Sweden to join NATO and the potential threats to Russia's security arising from this,” the Kremlin said.
As stated by the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova, Finland and Sweden, having joined NATO, “will become a space of confrontation between the North Atlantic bloc and Russia, with all the ensuing consequences.” According to her, the alliance has been “processing” Helsinki and Stockholm to influence their policies, “carefully molding Russia into the image of an enemy.” “Russia's special operation in Ukraine should be perceived as a consequence of the aggressive expansionist policy of NATO, led by the United States, and not vice versa,” she said.
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