The applications by Finland and Sweden to join the NATO defence bloc were approved by Germany’s Bundestag legislature on Friday, MIA informs.
The decision received support from parties in the governing coalition and the opposition Christian Democrats and even partially from members of the far-right Alternative for Germany. Only members of the hard-left Die Linke opposed the legislation en masse.
Both Finland and Sweden declined to seek NATO membership for decades out of fears of antagonizing Russia. However, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine this year has changed the political calculus and made large majorities in both countries decide that NATO membership is critical to security.
“Today we are strengthening the democratic values of NATO,” said Foreign Ministry official Tobias Lindner as lawmakers considered the proposal.