Finland has officially joined the North Atlantic Alliance.
Finland officially became the 31st NATO country after handing over its instruments of accession to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. He is the official representative in Washington, where the Alliance's depository is. This step has completed the official accession procedure.
During the formal procedure in Brussels, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg handed over the invitation from all NATO member states to the Foreign Minister of Finland. He, in turn, handed over the ratification documents to Blinken, who announced that Finland had officially become a NATO member.
The Finnish flag will be raised at NATO headquarters in Brussels following the "quickest accession procession in NATO's history."
Finland's NATO accession will end the country's neutrality era. It was a non-aligned state throughout its independency gained in 1917. Finland was subjected to Soviet armed aggression in the early stages of World War II.
Russia's recent invasion of Ukraine has prompted the Finns to seek safety under NATO's collective defence agreement. Finland's accession roughly doubles the length of NATO's border with Russia.
Even though Türkiye blocked Finland's accession for a long time, the whole procedure lasted less than a year.
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