Sweden officially joins NATO after decades of neutrality

World

Published: 2024-03-07 20:56

Last Updated: 2024-05-18 23:36


Swedish PM Ulf Kristersson (L) hands his country’s instruments of accession to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (Reuters)
Swedish PM Ulf Kristersson (L) hands his country’s instruments of accession to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (Reuters)

Sweden became NATO’s 32nd member today, Thursday, upon depositing its instrument of accession to the North Atlantic Treaty with the Government of the United States in Washington DC - a statement by NATO said.

“This is a historic day. Sweden will now take its rightful place at NATO’s table…After over 200 years of non-alignment Sweden now enjoys the protection granted under Article 5,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said.

“Sweden’s accession makes NATO stronger, Sweden safer and the whole Alliance more secure. Today’s accession demonstrates that NATO’s door remains open and that every nation has the right to choose its own path,” Stoltenberg added.

“Unity and solidarity will be Sweden’s guiding lights as a NATO member,” Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson said in Washington, DC after meeting the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken.

Sweden’s flag will be raised in a ceremony at NATO headquarters in Brussels next Monday, and simultaneously at NATO commands across Europe and North America.

United States President Joe Biden said that NATO is “stronger than ever” after Sweden’s accession, in a post on his official “X” platform.

“75 years ago when NATO was established, President Truman said the Alliance, “would create a shield against aggression and fear of aggression,” Biden said, “today, I am honored to welcome Sweden as NATO’s 32nd Ally,”

“That shield – and transatlantic security – is stronger than ever.”