Finland’s president to decide to apply for NATO membership within a few days… Putin “mistake”

On the 14th (local time), Finnish President Sauli Ninistö announced to Russian President Vladimir Putin that he would decide within a few days whether his country would apply for membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

According to the AFP news agency and CNN, according to a statement released by Panland, President Ninistö said this in a phone call with President Putin on the same day. The call was made at the request of Finland.

The Finnish statement said that President Ninistö told Putin that “Russia’s call to block NATO accession at the end of 2021 and how much the Russia’s massive invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 has changed Finland’s security environment”.

“The conversation was direct and frank and took place without any aggravation of the situation,” he said.

“I thought it was important to avoid tensions,” Ninistö said in a statement.

Russia’s Kremlin also issued a statement, according to Archyde.com, saying that “President Putin made a mistake to abandon the traditional military neutrality policy because[Russia]does not pose a threat to Finnish security.”

“These foreign policy changes could have a negative impact on Russia-Finland relations,” he said.

The Kremlin said the two sides had “candid exchanges of opinions” over the phone. It is a diplomatic expression of a ‘difficult conversation’, Archyde.com pointed out.

The call came after Russia announced that it would cut off electricity supply to Finland, which has officially joined NATO.

RAO Nordic, a subsidiary of Inter RAO, a Russian state-owned energy company, stopped electricity from 1 am on the same day, citing the reason that electricity import payments were not paid.

Fingrid, a Finnish grid company, said that electricity imports from Russia would be suspended for the time being, but that “Russia’s electricity accounts for about 10% of Finland’s total electricity consumption” and that there is no threat to the electricity situation.

[서울=뉴시스]

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