What is NATO?

NATO is a political and military aliance that was founded on April 4th 1949 by signing the Washington Treaty. NATO promotes democratic values and enables members to consult and cooperate on defence and security-related issues to solve problems, build trust and, in the long run, prevent conflict. NATO is also committed to the peaceful resolution of disputes. If diplomatic efforts fail, it has the military power to undertake crises-management operations. 

NATO Enlargement

NATO Enlargement

At present, NATO has 29 members. In 1949, there were 12 founding members of the Alliance: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the United States. The other member countries are: Greece and Turkey (1952), Germany (1955), Spain (1982), the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland (1999), Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia (2004), Albania and Croatia (2009), and Montenegro (2017).


Provision for enlargement is given by Article 10 of the North Atlantic Treaty.

Article 10 states that membership is open to any “European State in a position to further the principles of this Treaty and to contribute to the security of the North Atlantic area”.


You can find further information about NATO member states and Enlargement process by the following link