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STT: Germany, France, US pledge military support for Finland during Nato process

The pledges of support follow a similar promise made by the UK defence minister during a visit to Finland on Wednesday.

The process of ratifying any potential application by Finland or Sweden to join Nato could take between 4 and 12 months. Image: EyePress News / Shutterstock / AOP

The United States, Germany and France have joined the United Kingdom in pledging military support for Finland during any possible Nato accession period, should the need arise, according to a report by Finnish news agency STT.

However, the promises are not legally binding agreements, as such safeguards would require a legislative process in each country likely to last as long as the ratification of Finland's membership of Nato — which could take several months.

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The alliance could also not — even for the sake of its own credibility — welcome Finland and Sweden, yet at the same time leave the two Nordic nations alone to cope with possible military pressure during the membership process.

UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said during a visit to Finland on Wednesday that Britain would come to the aid of Finland and Sweden if they were attacked, even if neither country was a member of Nato.

Wallace made the comments alongside Finnish Minister of Defence, Antti Kaikkonen (Cen), adding that Finland and the UK defend common values such as democracy, human rights and the rule of law.

"It's inconceivable that Britain would not come to the support of Finland or Sweden if it was ever attacked," he said.

US gives "security Insurance" to Sweden

Reuters reported on Thursday (siirryt toiseen palveluun) that Sweden received "security assurances" from the United States for the period during which any potential application to join Nato is processed.

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde met her US counterpart, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, and several members of the Senate in Washington DC on Wednesday.

This security insurance is however different from the security guarantee as outlined in Article 5 of the Nato charter.

If Finland and Sweden apply for Nato membership, it is anticipated that ratification of the application by all 30 member countries will take between four to 12 months.

"I can say that I have spoken to Antony Blinken and to a number of senators who are responsible for these issues in the House Committee on Foreign Affairs," Linde told Sweden's public broadcaster SVT from Washington.

"The United States has a great interest in Sweden and Finland joining Nato. The Arctic and Baltic Sea region are believed to be very important in terms of security policy and they are therefore ready to provide different types of security insurances."

She added that although she could not go into specific detail, she was "very confident" that Sweden has US backing.

"It is not a concrete security guarantee, as that can only be obtained by a Nato member," Linde added.

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