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Menendez, Risch Statement on SFRC Approval of NATO Protocols for Sweden and Finland

WASHINGTON –  U.S. Senators Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the below statements in reaction to the Committee’s approval of the resolution of advice and consent to ratify the NATO accession protocols for Sweden and Finland. The accession protocols and resolution of advice and consent move next to the Floor for consideration by the full Senate.

“Finland’s and Sweden’s accession to NATO is undoubtedly one of the most consequential foreign policy successes in recent years, and I’m incredibly proud to witness the Senate Foreign Relations Committee fulfill its responsibilities to help determine how, when, and with whom the United States brings to bear the power of our diplomatic and military alliance. Their membership will be a force multiplier for stability and democracy, and their willingness to contribute to ongoing NATO operations will boost NATO’s resources, reducing the resource burden on existing members,” Chairman Menendez said. “As U.S. foreign policy priorities evolve to account for a changing world, what is self-evident is the future of the transatlantic partnership will be even more intertwined and integrated thanks to Putin’s recklessness. Today’s vote is further proof that the answer to aggression is not isolation, but deeper engagement with likeminded democracies. As we look to expand NATO, the Senate also reaffirms its rock solid commitment to the Ukrainian people in their struggle for freedom from oppression. We must redouble our efforts to provide the Ukrainian people every weapon they need to fight this barbaric Russian war machine.”

“Putin’s brutal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has strengthened the NATO alliance in ways we haven’t seen since World War II. Today’s bipartisan committee passage of the accession protocols for Finland and Sweden to join NATO is a testament to the importance of the alliance and U.S. support for its enlargement,” said Ranking Member Risch. “Both Finland and Sweden have been longtime friends and partners to both the United States and to NATO, and their strong political traditions and military capabilities will provide an immediate benefit to the alliance. As such, I, along with Senator Menendez, led my colleagues in a resolution in support of their joining NATO earlier this year. Now, I hope the Senate will move swiftly to pass the resolution of ratification so the United States can do its part to ratify Finland’s and Sweden’s accession to NATO as soon as possible.”

Find a copy of the resolution text HERE.