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The Hungarian parliament approved Sweden’s entry into NATO

The Hungarian parliament approved Sweden’s entry into NATO

He Parliament of Hungary ratified this Monday, February 26, Sweden’s accession to NATOthus raising the last obstacle to the entry of the Nordic country that ended decades of non-alignment and prompted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Hungarian legislators today approved Sweden’s accession by a resounding majority of 188 votes in favor and 6 against.

Sweden joining NATO

Following the pronouncement of the Hungarian Parliament, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said the military alliance will soon be “stronger.”

“Today is a historic day,” Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson reacted in X. whose country will become the 32nd member of the organization. “Sweden is ready to assume its Euro-Atlantic security responsibilities,” he wrote, almost two years after the accession process began, the news agency reported. AFP.

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“Now that all allies have approved it, Sweden will become NATO’s 32nd ally,” wrote the secretary general of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in X. “Sweden’s membership will make us stronger and more secure,” he noted.

For your partthe head of the German government, Olaf Scholz, considered that Sweden’s integration into the alliance “will strengthen” the “security of Europe and the world.”

After Parliament’s pronouncement, the law will go to the president’s office to be promulgated in the coming days.

Sweden’s path to joining NATO

According to NATO regulations, Sweden must send Washington the accession instruments to become the 32nd member of the pact.

Sweden faced a bumpy road to entering the military pact, including the difficult negotiation to obtain approval from Turkey, which concluded in January. Besides, had to convince the Hungarian Prime Minister, the nationalist politician Viktor Orban, since the accession protocol requires unanimous agreement of the members.

Sweden’s application to join NATO broke a policy of non-alignment that the country maintained for decades and that was anchored in the rejection of the majority of the population. The invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022 marked a drastic change in the attitude of Swedish political parties and public opinion, and in May 2022 the majority of Parliament voted in favor of applying for membership in the military alliance. Atlantic.

The request to enter NATO

He Swedish order was placed at the same time as the Finnish one, which in April 2023 became the 31st member of the organization. At the beginning of the parliamentary session, Orban praised Kristersson’s recent visit to Budapest, which contributed, according to him, to building “a fair and respectful relationship between the two countries” beyond the “differences of opinions.”

“Sweden’s entry into NATO will strengthen Hungary’s security”, he added. Kristersson’s visit paved the way for negotiations and during his trip, Hungary announced the purchase of four fighter jets from Sweden.

The expert’s opinion

For Some experts, the delay of Hungary’s approval was a strategy to negotiate with the European Union the unlocking of billions of euros in funds that are frozen. Other analysts pointed to Orban’s closeness to Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish Head of State Recep Tayyip Erdogan as the reason. which explained his reluctance for security reasons.

The Swedish armed forces have 50,000 soldiers, of whom about half are reservists, but the prime minister declared in January that his country is willing to provide troops to NATO forces in Latvia. But geopolitically, after the entry of Finland, lSweden’s entry means for Russia that the Baltic Sea is now surrounded by NATO member countries, and some analysts describe it as a “NATO lake.”

Source: Ambito

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