Washington D.C, 28 May 2022 (TDI): The US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, held a meeting with the Foreign Minister of Finland, Pekka Haavisto, in Washington D.C.
In addition to discussing Finland’s bid to join NATO, they discussed assistance to Ukraine and strengthening the Transatlantic partnership.
Secretary Blinken reiterated strong US support for Finland’s bid to join NATO. He said that the US will fully support the country during the process of joining. He further said that Finland and NATO have a history of working together and enjoy a sufficient level of interoperability.
Always a pleasure to meet with my good friend Tony @SecBlinken
We appreciate United States' strong support for Finland and Sweden's NATO membership. We are doing our utmost to ensure a rapid process.
Finnish and Swedish membership would strengthen @NATO.
— Pekka Haavisto (@Haavisto) May 27, 2022
The US Secretary of State proclaimed that “Our partnership, the partnership between Finland and the United States, has been rooted deeply in our shared values of democracy, of human rights, rule of law, and a shared commitment to strengthening the international rules-based order.”
Furthermore, both officials discussed the situation in Ukraine and the importance of further aligning their joint efforts to support Ukraine and counter Russia. They reiterated their full support of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Excellent meeting with Finnish Foreign Minister @Haavisto to discuss strong U.S. support for Finland’s application to join @NATO and deepening Transatlantic security cooperation. We reaffirmed the need for robust assistance to Ukraine against President Putin’s brutal war. pic.twitter.com/UrH7d5xAnw
— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken) May 27, 2022
The Finnish Foreign Minister, in turn, expressed gratitude to the United States for its support of Finland.
He expressed that Finland’s decision to apply for NATO membership is based on a democratic process and enjoys support among the Finnish people. Finland’s NATO membership would strengthen the security of Northern Europe and the wider transatlantic security, he claimed.
The officials held a joint press conference answering questions from journalists. Responding to Turkish concerns over Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership, Blinken said that he is confident that the countries will negotiate over their differences. The Finnish Minister said that his country is engaging in direct and constructive dialogue with Turkey.
Finland and the USA established bilateral diplomatic relations in 1920. The US was one of the first countries to recognize Finland’s independence in 1917. Since the end of the Cold War, Finland and the US have enjoyed growing partnerships in areas of mutual interest.
Finland is strategically important for the US and NATO due to its long border with Russia. Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Finland has felt more threat and pressure from its eastern border.
Both countries enjoy good and cordial relations. Moreover, they collaborate in the fields of science and technology, education, military, economy, and global politics.