Germans, Czechs approve Nordics joining NATO

Germany says it remains confident that Sweden and Finland will be able to join NATO, despite alliance member Turkey’s current objections.

Government spokeswoman Christiane Hoffmann says Germany is “actively working” to resolve the issues raised by Turkey, but declines to elaborate.

“The German government remains confident that all NATO members will support this accession and that it can be achieved quickly,” she says.

Hoffmann says the German Cabinet on Wednesday backed the accession protocol. Parliamentary approval is still required, but that is all but assured in Germany.

Hoffmann added that Germany would also support NATO membership for Austria and Ireland, should those neutral countries decide to join the military alliance.

The Czech Republic’s government also approved NATO membership for Finland and Sweden — just hours after the two countries submitted their requests.

The accession protocol still needs to be ratified by both chambers of Czech Parliament, which is expected to happen soon. Prime Minister Petr Fiala says he doesn’t anticipate any obstacles, as governing parties hold the majority in both chambers of parliament.

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