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February 04
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"Russia's invasion of Ukraine has heightened security alert levels in Europe, with Moscow's nuclear rhetoric serving as a key factor in prompting Finland to apply to join NATO," the country's Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto told Japanese news agency Kyodo.

Russia's invasion meant "security realities in Europe have changed," Haavisto said in a recent interview with Kyodo News on the sidelines of a foreign ministerial meeting of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe held in Lodz, Poland.

"Moscow's nuclear threats had left Finland, which shares an around 1,300 kilometer-long border with Russia, reflecting on how to respond and from where to gain support if subjected to such rhetoric," the minister said.

These concerns were one of the reasons that prompted Finland to make a historic change in its security policy and apply for membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Haavisto added.

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