Last year, all NATO member states made a historic decision to invite Finland and Sweden to join the Alliance. That decision triggered the fastest ratification process in NATO’s modern history. Today, on 4 April 2023, we welcome Finland as the thirty first member of the Alliance.
“I welcome the vote by the Turkish Grand National Assembly to ratify Finland’s membership in NATO. All 30 NATO Allies have now ratified the accession protocol. And I have just spoken with President Sauli Niinistö to congratulate him on this historic occasion”, said Jens Stoltenberg, NATO Secretary General, on 31 March 2023. Four days later, on the Alliance’s 74. Anniversary, Finland became a full NATO member.
The Joint Force Training Centre joined NATO HQ and both strategic commands - Allied Command Transformation and Allied Command Operations, in welcoming Finland to NATO by hosting a flag raising ceremony.
“I am convinced that Finland is stronger and safer within NATO. I am also convinced that NATO is stronger and safer with Finland as an Ally”, said Major General Norbert Wagner, the JFTC Commander, addressing participants of the ceremony, to include Finnish delegation taking part in the Final Coordination Conference for Coalition Warrior Interoperability Exercise 2023.
For many years, troops from Finland and NATO countries have worked side-by-side as partners. From today, we stand together as Allies. Having highly capable forces, advanced capabilities and strong democratic institutions, Finland brings a lot to the Alliance. This is a good day for Finland’s security, for Nordic security and for NATO as a whole.
“All Allies agree that a rapid conclusion of the ratification process for Sweden will be in everyone’s interest”, added NATO Secretary General in his remarks on Finland’s accession to NATO. “I look forward to also welcoming Sweden as a full member of the NATO family as soon as possible.”