The American Senate on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved including Sweden and Finland in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
There was a bipartisan consensus on letting both the Scandinavian Nations in the world’s largest military alliance led by the United States.
The vote was 95 to 1, as only one Senator, Josh Hawley of the Republican Party from Missouri opposed the move.
The Democrats argued that allowing Finland and Sweden into the alliance would relieve pressure on the United States and would broaden the scope of the alliance.
Both Finland and Sweden have been nervous since Putin’s ‘special military operation’ in Ukraine which started in February of this year. Their bids have become stronger since they believe that the Russians threaten their sovereignty and existence.
“Finland’s and Sweden’s membership will strengthen NATO even further, and is all the more urgent given Russian aggression, given Putin’s immoral and unjustified war in Ukraine,” said Senator Chuck Schumer a Democrat from New York.
“Putin is strengthening the NATO alliance, and nothing shows it better” than the Senate’s resounding approval of the pact,” added the Senator.
To let a new member into the alliance, all the 30 members should vote in favour. Until now, 22 countries have already agreed to Finland and Sweden’s entry. Turkey has been threatening to block their membership which could delay the process.
Helsinki and Stockholm’s bids have previously been blocked by Turkey as they alleged that Scandinavian states had been offering support to the PKK (Kurdish Workers’ Party), an armed Kurdish group that was been fighting the Turkish Government for an autonomous Kurdish state.
Turkey alleged that Sweden was harbouring several PKK members, however, these claims were denied by the Swedish government.
Turkey also demanded to lift the ban on arms sales.
This comes the day after the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan. The US seems to cement its image as the global superpower.