US President Joe Biden met with the leaders of Sweden and Finland on Thursday after the countries set aside their long-standing neutrality and left to join the NATO alliance in response to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.
Hours before his first trip to Asia as president, Biden will sit down at the White House with Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Anderson and Finnish President Sauli Ninistট to discuss their NATO application.
“This is a historic event, a watershed moment in European security. With a long tradition of neutrality, the two countries will join the world’s strongest defense alliance,” said Jack Sullivan, the White House national security adviser.
Biden has made it a top priority to unite Europe against Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. Turkey has questioned the inclusion of Finland and Sweden in the alliance, urging Sweden to stop supporting Kurdish militants, which are considered a terrorist group, and both to lift the ban on arms sales to Turkey.
Sullivan told reporters Wednesday that U.S. officials were confident that Turkey’s concerns could be addressed. All 30 NATO members must approve any new entrants.
Biden’s meeting comes when he seeks approval from the United States. Congress to provide ও 40 billion in aid to Ukraine for arms and humanitarian aid by September.
U.S. officials said Wednesday that the U.S. had gathered intelligence that showed some Russian officials were aware that marijuana was being used against Ukrainians.
“Some Russian officials have acknowledged that despite claims that the Russian-speaking city of Mariupol is a ‘liberator’, Russian forces continue to beat and electrify city officials and carry out serious abuses, including looting homes,” the official said in a public statement. Intelligence
Russian officials are concerned that these abuses could “further motivate Mariupol residents to resist Russian occupation,” the official said.
The Kremlin did not immediately respond to a request for comment, and Reuters was unable to verify the allegations.
(Except for the title, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and was published from a syndicated feed.)