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Sweden and Finland join UK-led response force
At a signing ceremony held at Karlberg Castle June 30, Swedish Minister for Defence Peter Hultqvist together with UK Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon and Minster of Defence of Finland Jussi Niinistö joined the United Kingdom-led Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF).
JEF is a UK framework for a rapidly deployable force capable of conducting the full spectrum of UN, EU and NATO operations. Participants, besides the UK, are Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Norway. Participation in missions is decided on a case by case basis, after decision by the appropriate competent national authorities.
– The JEF will complement our bilateral and multilateral cooperation focusing both on our close vicinity and a broader global agenda, said Minister for Defence of Sweden Peter Hultqvist.
– In an uncertain world, the UK is spearheading this high-readiness joint force, which will help us tackle growing threats. Together, we pack a more powerful punch. This is a Force of Friends, and alongside Sweden, Finland, and our other partners in this force, we remain committed to security, in Europe and around the world. We are stronger together, and, this joint force clearly shows Britain is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with our international allies.
– Both Sweden and the UK are major partners for Finland and joining JEF gives our cooperation yet another dimension. We believe that the cooperation will enhance our national defence capability and deepen cooperation with our partners, said Minister of Defence of Finland Jussi Niinistö.
Representatives from other participating countries were also present at Karlberg Castle. After the ceremony Peter Hultqvist, Michael Fallon and Jussi Niinistö will attend the seminar – The Security Situation in Northern Europe, arranged by Folk och Försvar and Finlandsinstitutet.