President Niinistö: Finland aims to join Nato with Sweden “as soon as possible”

Sauli Niinistö (right) at a press conference on 7 February 2023 with Canada’s Governor-General Mary Simon (left). (Markku Ulander / Contributor / AFP)

Finland’s President Sauli Niinistö said on Tuesday that Finland is proceeding with its Nato process in “complete understanding” with Sweden.

Niinistö noted that the two Nordic nations have received different types of messages from Turkey about their Nato membership ratifications.

Finland’s President was speaking on Tuesday during a press conference after an official meeting with Mary Simon, Canada’s Governor-General.

Finland had been in contact with Nato headquarters, Sweden, the White House and Turkey, Niinistö added.

“The goal is for Finland and Sweden to be accepted as soon as possible,” he said.

The public conversation has focused on whether parliament should make a final decision on Nato membership even if all member countries had not yet ratified Finland and Sweden’s membership.

The alternative option would be for the issue to be put on hold until after the next parliamentary election on 2 April.

Niinistö declined to take a public position on the matter, but said that is for parliament to decide.

He said that he is however ready to discuss the matter futher if parliament would like to, adding that there are advantages to both options.

Related stories from around the North: 

Canada: Canada’s North spared from national military staff shortages, CBC News

Faroe Islands: Faroe Islands’ Arctic strategy focuses on security, climate & cooperation, Eye on the Arctic

Finland: Finland presents NATO membership proposal to parliament while awaiting Hungary, Turkey ratification, Eye on the Arctic

Greenland: Greenland, Iceland sign cooperation agreement in Reykjavik, Eye on the Arctic

Iceland: Canada’s GG among keynote speakers at Arctic Circle Assembly, Eye on the Arctic

Norway: Hybrid threat researcher detained in Tromsø on suspicion of being Russian agent, Thomson Reuters

Russia: Newly deployed nuke-bombers at Kola is certainly a signalling, expert says, The Independent Barents Observer

United States: China, Russia among global priorities, including in Arctic, in U.S. security strategy, Eye on the Arctic

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