UK welcomes seven new countries to Nato alliance

The Foreign Office is hosting a reception today to welcome the accession of seven new member states to Nato.

Ambassadors and defence attaches from the seven states - Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia – will attend the reception, along with UK parliamentarians and government and military officials.

The seven new members each adopted a Membership Action Plan in 1999. As a result of following this plan, they have succeeded in reforming their political, defence, legal and security structures to the standards required for membership of Nato.

The seven were invited to join Nato at the Prague Summit of November 2002.

Baroness Symons, Foreign Office Minister with responsibility for international security, said: "On behalf of the UK government, I would like to congratulate our seven new Allies on their official accession to Nato this week. We recognise the efforts they have made in order to join Nato.

"Each new member country has a valuable contribution to make to Nato operations and to the fight against our common threats, and the Alliance will be stronger with their support."

With the addition of the seven new member states, there are now 26 countries in Nato.


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