US President Joe Biden gave remarks supporting Sweden’s and Finland’s applications to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) during a press conference held at the White House in Washington on May 19.
Biden hosted Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson and Finnish President Sauli Niinisto at the White House on Thursday to discuss the “mutual security guarantees” of the NATO alliance amid the threat of escalation from Russia as it continues its offensive in Ukraine.
“Both Finland and Sweden are already working in coordination with the United States and our other allies and partners to support the brave people of Ukraine as they defend their freedom against Russia’s invasion,” Biden said.
“We have consulted closely at every stage, as Sweden and Finland made their determination [to apply to NATO], and today I’m proud to assure them that they have the full, total, complete backing of the United States of America …. New members joining NATO is not a threat to any nation, it never has been. NATO’s purpose is to defend against aggression,” Biden said.
Niinisto spoke on Turkey’s concerns over Finland’s potential NATO membership, assuring that Finland is committed to mutual security interests, and reiterated support for the people of Ukraine.
Andersson spoke on the shared values and beliefs of democracy and freedom between the United States and Sweden, which she said are “being put to the test.”
Andersson said, “During dark times, it is great to be among close friends.” Credit: The White House via Storyful