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NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation)


The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO, or the Atlantic Alliance) was founded by the North Atlantic Treaty, also known as the Treaty of Washington, signed on 4 April 1949, and has its headquarters in Brussels. It currently has 28 members, following successive enlargements:

  • 1949 (12 founding members): Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom & the United States;
  • February 1952: Greece & Turkey;
  • May 1955: West Germany;
  • May 1982: Spain;
  • March 1999: the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland;
  • March 2004: Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia;
  • 1 April 2009: Albania and Croatia.

EU countries’commitments and cooperation under the common security and defence policy are consistent with their commitments under NATO.

Source:  EUR Lex Glossary

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