Helsinki [Finland], May 15 (ANI): Finland on Sunday announced that the country has agreed to join the alliance, a decision that is likely to perturb Russia, at a time when the Ukraine conflict is going on for over two months and resulted in significant losses on both sides.
This statement was issued after Finland's president and the Ministerial Committee on Foreign and Security Policy finalised a report on the country's accession to NATO on Sunday.
"In the meeting, the President and the Ministerial Committee agreed that Finland would apply for membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) after the Parliament has been heard," the Finnish government said in a statement.
Finnish President Sauli Niinisto and Prime Minister Sanne Marin held a joint press conference following the publication of the report, where they noted that the full strength of democracy was at work.
"The Parliament of Finland will receive an application for NATO membership," Niinisto said.
The prime minister termed the decision "historic" and assured that Finland, as one of the NATO member states, will also be responsible for the security of the alliance as a whole.
The decision will be discussed in parliament on Monday, with the voting expected on Tuesday.
In a phone call on Saturday, Niinisto informed Russian President Vladimir Putin of Finland's decision to seek NATO membership in the next few days.
In a statement, the Kremlin said that Putin stressed that abandoning the traditional policy of military neutrality would be a mistake, claiming that there are no threats to Finland's security.
Finland and Sweden have been considering plans to join NATO since Russia launched a "military operation" in Ukraine on February 24.
Later in March, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance would fast-track the membership applications of Finland and Sweden if they decide to join. (ANI)