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NATO leaders invite Finland, Sweden to join

(ANSA-AFP) - MADRID, JUN 29 - NATO leaders agreed Wednesday to formally invite Finland and Sweden to join the alliance after Turkey struck a deal with the Nordic duo to drop its objections, a statement said. "Today, we have decided to invite Finland and Sweden to become members of NATO, and agreed to sign the Accession Protocols," a declaration from a summit in Madrid said. NATO leaders on Wednesday decried Russia's "appalling cruelty" in Ukraine and pledged more support for Kyiv as it faces the onslaught from Moscow. "Ukraine can count on us for as long as it takes," NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said at a summit in Madrid. (ANSA-AFP).