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Finland and Sweden submit applications to join NATO

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Finland and Sweden have officially submitted their applications to join NATO

Finland and Sweden have handed in applications to join NATO.

It ends decades of political neutrality for both nations, after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Chief of NATO says the applications are quote an “historic step”.

If their bid is successful, it will bring the alliance’s membership to 32.

While Russia strongly opposes the move, there are also members within NATO’s own ranks voicing their concerns.

Dubbed the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, the NATO alliance was founded in 1949

It follows one rule: an attack on one, is an attack on all.

It sought to counter Russian expansion in Europe after World War Two.

But following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, many of its former Eastern European allies joined the alliance, something that has raised concerns in Moscow.

Finland and Sweden need the support of all member states to join. If they’re successful, it will take the alliance to 32 members.

NATO members must spend 2 per cent of their GDP on defence. Finland already meets this target and Sweden says it will do so “as soon as possible”.

The two countries will also bring a range of military might.

Finland has over 19-thousand active troops, and Sweden has over 14-and-a-half thousand.

There are 220 tanks, and over 200 combat aircraft.

Russia believes NATO has been verging on its door stop and is warning both nations against joining.

Turkey’s President is also voicing concerns, saying the two Scandinavian nations should not send delegations to convince him of their bids.

Anthony Lucas is reporter, presenter and social media producer with ticker News. Anthony holds a Bachelor of Professional Communication, with a major in Journalism from RMIT University as well as a Diploma of Arts and Entertainment journalism from Collarts. He’s previously worked for 9 News, ONE FM Radio and Southern Cross Austerio’s Hit Radio Network. 

Business

Taco Bell owners close to selling KFC in Russia

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KFC is known for finger lickin’ chicken, but the secret herbs and spices will soon be swept away from Russians

The company behind Russia’s KFC business is close to selling

This is all part of its plan to exit the country’s market.

Yum Brans plans to fully exit Russia once the KFC transaction is complete.

Since March, Yum has been redirecting any profits from its Russian operations to humanitarian efforts.

The restaurant company added it is stopping all investment, restaurant development and operations in the country.

It sold its Russian Pizza Hut franchises, which re-branded in may.

The Taco Bell owner is the latest Western restaurant operator to wind down its Russian operations, closing the doors of about one thousand KFC locations

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Ukraine Crisis

At least two killed, seven wounded in Russian shelling of Sloviansk

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A central market went up in flames in Ukraine’s east

Russian shelling caused a market ablaze in Ukraine’s eastern city of Sloviansk, killing two people and injuring seven.

The mayor of the region says the city was being hit by Russian artillery salvoes from closer positions, as it became a frontline city.

With massive shelling, the Donetsk governor called on everyone to evacuate.

It’s clear Russia is seeking to control all of the eastern industrial Donbas area.

The area comprises the regions of Luhansk and Donetsk, and President Vladimir Putin claims it’s all part of Russia.

Meanwhile as it combats Russian aggression, Ukraine’s Armed Forces published a video captured from inside of Ukrainian SU-25 fighter jets

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Ukraine Crisis

Finland, Sweden another step closer to full NATO membership

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Finland and Sweden are a step closer to full NATO membership after all thirty NATO allies signed an accession protocol.

It will be NATO’s biggest expansion in decades – but it likely won’t happen in full for at least a year.

NATO allies signed an accession protocol for Finland and Sweden to join the military alliance in Brussels on Tuesday (July 5).

Ankara had previously threatened to scupper their chances of joining.

Both Nordic countries gave assurances to Turkey in response that they would do more to fight terrorism – and Turkey backed down.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg hailed the historic move,

This is truly an historic moment […] with 32 nations around the table, we will be even stronger.

JENS StOLTENBERG, NATO SECRETARY GENERAL

This protocol allows Helsinki and Stockholm to take part in NATO meetings, and have greater access to intelligence.

But the ratification process can take up to a year or more.

Neither country will be protected by NATO’s defence clause – where an attack on one is considered an attack on all during that time.

THE DUMA IS RUSSIA’S PARLIAMENT


Meanwhile, Russia’s Duma announced two bills that would put Russia onto a more aggressive wartime economy.

The first bill would allow Russia’s government to demand businesses supply the military with goods.

The second bill would oblige employees to be available to work overtime, nights, and forego additional pay in support of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The bills need a second and third reading, approval by Russia’s upper house, and be signed by Vladimir Putin before they would become law

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