Finland formally joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation - IAS Academy in Coimbatore
- Finland formally joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).
- Finland officially became the 31st member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
- This latest move marks a major shift in the security landscape in northeastern Europe amidst the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.
- i.e. Now that Finland has joined NATO, if Finland is invaded or attacked, all NATO members would come to its aid.
- The move also marks the end of an era of military non-alignment for Finland.
- Finland, after repelling an invasion attempt by the Soviet Union during the Second World War, had opted for non-alignment and maintain friendly relations with Russia.
- Finland’s accession is seen as a setback for Russia as Finland shares a 1,340-km eastern frontier with Russia.
- Russia has said that it would strengthen its military capacity in its western and northwestern regions in response to the move.
- North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is a military alliance established by the North Atlantic Treaty (also called the Washington Treaty) of April, 1949, by the United States, Canada, and several Western European nations to provide collective security against the Soviet Union.
- There are currently 30 member states.
- Its original members were Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
- Joining the original signatories were Greece and Turkey (1952), West Germany (1955, from 1990 as Germany), Spain (1982), the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland (1999), Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia (2004), Albania and Croatia (2009), Montenegro (2017), and North Macedonia (2020).
- France withdrew from the integrated military command of NATO in 1966 but remained a member of the organization, it resumed its position in NATO’s military command in 2009.
- Recently, Finland and Sweden have shown interest to join NATO.
- Headquarters: Brussels, Belgium.
- Headquarters of Allied Command Operations: Mons, Belgium.
Objectives of NATO
- NATO’s essential and enduring purpose is to safeguard the freedom and security of all its members by political and military means.
- Political objectives: NATO promotes democratic values and enables members to consult and cooperate on defense and security-related issues to solve problems, build trust and, in the long run, prevent conflict.
- Military Objectives: NATO is committed to the peaceful resolution of disputes. If diplomatic efforts fail, it has the military power to undertake crisis-management operations.
- These are carried out under the collective defence clause of NATO's founding treaty - Article 5 of the Washington Treaty or under a United Nations mandate, alone or in cooperation with other countries and international organisations.
- NATO has only once invoked Article 5, on September 12, 2001 following the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center in the US.