Finland will formally join NATO on Tuesday as the 31st member. Russia prompted a warning that it will push its defences near their joint border. The Finnish president, Sauli Niinistö, and the defence minister, Antti Kaikkonen, will attend the ceremony, along with the foreign minister, Pekka Haavisto.“This is a historic week,” NATO secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg, a former Norwegian prime minister, told media. Finland and Sweden abandoned their traditional positions of military non-alignment to seek protection under NATO’s security umbrella after Russia invaded Ukraine.
NATO , the North Atlantic Treaty Organization ,was formed in 1949 by 12 countries, including the US, UK, Canada and France. Its original goal was to challenge Russian expansion in Europe after World War Two. Finland has a 1,340km (832 mile) land border with Russia. The country’s flag will be raised at NATO’s headquarters in Brussels.