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Defence Secretary meets European counterparts for talks in Iceland

Ministers from the Northern Group discussed the security of northern Europe following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

The twelve Northern Group nations met in Reykjavik this week (8 June) to discuss the security challenges for Northern Europe following Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

The ministers of defence issued a joint statement condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, committing to support Ukraine both militarily and politically, and welcoming the sovereign decisions of Finland and Sweden to apply for NATO membership.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace MP said:

At these uncertain times, our international partnerships are our strength.

The joint statement issued by the Northern Group reinforces our unequivocal condemnation of Putin’s barbaric invasion and our determination that Ukraine succeeds.

I look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationship with the Northern Group which, alongside NATO and the Joint Expeditionary Force, helps ensure our mutual safety.

The Northern Group is a multilateral grouping of likeminded nations which collaborates on security issues in Northern Europe. There are twelve member nations: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden and the UK.

While in Iceland, the Defence Secretary also signed a new Framework Agreement with Finland as both countries look to deepen their bilateral relationship with each other. The agreement commits both countries to enhancing defence co-operation in areas such as intelligence sharing, countering hybrid threats, improving interoperability and developing the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF).

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