UPDATED 1:24 PM PT – Thursday, June 2, 2022
On Thursday, President Joe Biden and his National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan met with NATO Chief Jens Stoltenberg to discuss the Ukraine crisis. The three officials spoke at the White House about the bids by Sweden and Finland to join NATO amid opposition by Turkey.
“The decisions by Finland and Sweden to apply for NATO membership are historic,” said Stoltenberg. “They will strengthen our Alliance. We have to address the security concerns of all allies and I’m confident that we will find the united way forward.”
Great meeting with @POTUS to prepare for our #NATOSummit later this month. I thanked him for the #US leadership in #NATO's response to #Russia's war in #Ukraine. We agree that a strong transatlantic Alliance is the cornerstone for our security in a more competitive world. pic.twitter.com/0gSbbwH5q0
— Jens Stoltenberg (@jensstoltenberg) June 2, 2022
In recent days, Turkey accused Sweden and Finland of supporting terrorism. He believes those countries have no place in NATO. He also acknowledged that NATO is preparing for a long lasting conflict in Ukraine.
“Wars are by nature unpredictable and therefore we just have to be prepared for the long haul,” he stated.
Stoltenberg declared that while NATO does not want confrontation with Russia, the western military alliance has a “responsibility” to support Ukraine. He plans to meet with leaders from those three countries in the coming days.
“The easiest way to get more grain out and to reduce the pressure on food prices is for President Putin to end the war,” the NATO Chief voiced . “As long as that’s not the case, I welcome the effort by different countries.”
Stoltenberg said he looks forward to welcoming President Biden to the NATO summit in Madrid in the coming weeks.