Vice President Joe Biden of the United States will visit the United Kingdom, Lithuania, and Finland as part of an effort to strengthen the NATO alliance.
The White House announced that from July 9-13, Vice President Biden will visit the United Kingdom, starting with a stop in London for meetings with King Charles III and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
The 11th and 12th of July find him in Vilnius, Lithuania for the 74th annual NATO summit. The next stop is a summit between American and Nordic heads of state in Helsinki, Finland.
As the crisis in Ukraine enters its second year, Al Jazeera reports that Biden’s trip to Europe is meant to strengthen the international coalition against Russian aggression.
The annual NATO summit, which is being held this year in Vilnius, Lithuania, is the primary reason for Biden’s five-day visit.
The White House has stated that the president will also travel to Britain and Helsinki, Finland to celebrate Finland’s April admission into the 31-nation military alliance.
The NATO summit occurs at a time when the war has reached a new turning point.
According to its military officials, Ukrainian troops have begun retaking land in the southeast of the country, and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has stated that counter-offensive and defensive activities are ongoing against Russian forces, as reported by Al Jazeera.
Notably, the conflict between Russia and Ukraine began when Ukraine sought membership in NATO.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has maintained his stance despite the ongoing Russian invasion for almost a year.
In addition, I appreciate NATO’s backing of our cause. After meeting with Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez on Saturday, he made this statement on Twitter: “It is now the obvious fact – the wider NATO is in Europe, the wider the space of peace in Europe.”
On June 13, Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary-general of NATO, paid a visit to the White House, where he and Vice President Joe Biden reiterated that the Western alliance remained unified in defending Ukraine.
Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, both Finland and Sweden have shown an interest in joining NATO.
In April of this year, Finland officially became a member of the bloc after Turkey dropped its objections to the country’s membership.
Turkey has “security concerns” with Sweden and accuses it of harbouring “terrorist groups,” hence the country has been unable to join the alliance so far.
Furthermore, Hungary has raised concerns about Sweden joining the union because of that country’s criticism of Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orban.
Numerous lives have been lost since the Russia-Ukraine conflict began on February 24, 2022, and the conflict continues to intensify between the two countries to this day.
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