Portugal: Parliament set to ratify Finland, Sweden NATO membership in September - Plataforma Media

Portugal: Parliament set to ratify Finland, Sweden NATO membership in September

Portugal is expected to ratify the accession of Finland and Sweden to NATO in September, after the government’s draft resolutions on the matter were tabled in parliament on Tuesday

According to a parliamentary source, the ratification of the accession of the two countries to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) is expected to go to the plenary session in September.

The Government’s draft resolutions on the matter – approved by the Cabinet meeting on 14 July – entered parliament on Tuesday, according to the parliament’s website, having been referred to the parliamentary committees for Foreign Affairs and Portuguese Communities and National Defence.

Given that the last plenary session before the parliamentary holidays was on Thursday, the motions for resolutions in question cannot be voted on until September.

In the two texts – one dedicated to Sweden, and the other to Finland -, the government reproduces the same arguments as to why the two countries should join the Atlantic Alliance.

According to the executive, led by the Portuguese Socialist Party, both Finland and Sweden meet “currently the necessary conditions for membership of NATO, as a result of cooperation in various areas, within the parameters set by the Alliance”.

The executive stresses that the accession of two member states of the European Union (EU) to NATO “will contribute to strengthening the complementary relationship, in the field of security and defence, between the two organisations, in scrupulous respect for the principles inscribed in the respective constituent treaties”.

“It will also contribute so that the Atlantic Alliance is strengthened as one of the basic structures in the field of security and defence, which corresponds to two of the main national objectives in the field of foreign policy,” read the texts in question, signed by the prime minister, António Costa, the minister of foreign affairs, João Gomes Cravinho, and the assistant minister for parliamentary affairs, Ana Catarina Mendes.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on 24 February, Sweden and Finland – two traditionally neutral countries – handed in an application for NATO membership on 28 May.

After initial resistance from Turkey, the NATO heads of state and government, meeting at a summit in Madrid, officially invited Sweden and Finland on 29 June to become members of the Alliance.

To this end, the accession protocols of the two countries were formally signed by the ambassadors of the 30 NATO member states on 5 July and must now be ratified by the parliaments of all Atlantic Alliance countries and communicated to the US government in order to enter into force.

So far, more than half of the 30 NATO member states have ratified and communicated the accession protocols to the US executive. According to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, by 20 July, this had been the case with Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Estonia, the United Kingdom, Albania, Germany, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Bulgaria, Latvia, Slovenia, Croatia, Poland and Lithuania.

On his way to the NATO summit in Madrid on 29 June, António Costa had been asked by journalists when Portugal would be able to ratify the accession of Finland and Sweden, and he replied: “I believe it will be quite soon.

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