Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder provided the following readout:
Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III met with his counterparts this week, Ministers Kaikkonen and Hultqvist from Finland and Sweden. The leaders reaffirmed the strength of the trilateral relationship, enhanced by Finland and Sweden’s ongoing accession process into NATO.
The leaders discussed key global security issues including Russia’s recent escalations of its unprovoked war in Ukraine, affirming our unwavering support for Ukrainian sovereignty. The leaders also discussed the impact of the Nord Stream pipeline explosions and the importance of resilience, as well as other security issues in the Nordic region and the Arctic.
The progress towards Sweden and Finland’s accession to NATO was also discussed, with all parties extending thanks to those nations that have already ratified the NATO accession protocols.