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Turkey lifts blockade on Finland and Sweden for NATO membership

Turkey lifts blockade on Finland and Sweden for NATO membership

After weeks of opposition, Turkey announced today that it would lift its veto and support Finland and Sweden's application to join NATO during the alliance summit in Madrid.

"I am pleased to announce that we have an agreement that paves the way for Sweden and Finland to join NATO," Jens Stoltenberg, the alliance's secretary general, told reporters in Madrid on Tuesday evening.

The three countries' foreign ministers sign a memorandum of understanding in Madrid ahead of a two-day meeting of NATO leaders.

"Our foreign ministers signed a tripartite memorandum, which confirms that Turkey at the Madrid Summit this week will support the invitation of Finland and Sweden to become members of NATO ," Finnish President Sauli Niinistö said in a statement.

"Our joint memorandum underlines the commitment of Finland, Sweden and Turkey to give their full support against threats to each other's security, " the Finnish leader added.

"Becoming a NATO ally will further strengthen this commitment, " he added.

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