The NATO summit is currently taking place in Madrid. The focus is on the consequences of the Ukraine war. Now there are first decisions: The admission process for Finland and Sweden has started, the eastern flank is to be drastically strengthened. All news about the NATO summit in the FOCUS Online news ticker.

2:34 p.m .: In view of Russia’s war against Ukraine, the 30 NATO countries have decided to significantly strengthen the eastern flank. In addition, the heads of state and government agreed on a new armed forces model at the summit in Madrid on Wednesday, as the German Press Agency learned from alliance circles. It envisages keeping more than 300,000 soldiers on high operational readiness in the future.

2:31 p.m .: NATO has officially started the process of admitting Finland and Sweden. According to information from the German Press Agency, all heads of state and government of the 30 member states approved the plans at the summit in Madrid on Wednesday.

2:25 p.m .: The heads of state and government of the 30 NATO countries decided on a new strategic concept for the military alliance at their summit in Madrid. The German Press Agency learned this from meeting participants on Wednesday. The basic document for political and military planning describes Russia as the “greatest and most immediate threat to the security of the allies and to peace and stability in the Euro-Atlantic area”, China as a challenge.

The new strategic concept replaces the previous version from 2010. At that time, the Allies had still hoped that the time of great tensions with Russia was over and banked on a “real strategic partnership” with the country.

The new concept now states: “In view of their hostile policies and actions, we cannot consider the Russian Federation as our partner.” Relations could only change again if Russia ceased its aggressive behavior and fully complied with international law. However, one remains ready to keep the communication channels open with Moscow in order to reduce risks, prevent escalations and create more transparency.

The foreword states: “The Russian Federation’s war of aggression against Ukraine has shattered the peace and severely changed our security environment.” The need to significantly strengthen deterrence and defense is underlined.