Finland says debate on NATO membership ‘will change’ after Russian invasion

Finish Prime Minister Sanna Marin on Thursday said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will change the debate around NATO membership within her country.

“Finland is not currently facing an immediate military threat, but it is also now clear that the debate on NATO membership in Finland will change,” Marin said, YLE News reported.

Finland has been debating for months whether the country should apply for NATO membership, with Marin saying it would require broad support for the country to move forward with an application. 

Finland and Sweden, who are both not officially members of NATO, will be at a summit the alliance will host Friday.

Finland’s president, Sauli Niinistö, condemned Russia’s attack and President Vladimir Putin, saying “the mask has now come off and only the cold face of war is visible,” according to YLE.

Finland has around 80 citizens in Ukraine at the moment, Finish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto said.

Finland is one of many countries condemning Putin’s attack on Ukraine. As tensions rose between Ukraine and Russia over the past months, debate for NATO membership in Finland increased. 

Russia claims one of the reasons it attacked Ukraine is due to Western countries’ willingness to consider Ukraine for NATO membership.

Tags Countries Finland NATO Reactions to the 2021–2022 Russo-Ukrainian crisis Vladimir Putin

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