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15 May, 1998
The Greek Parliament plenary yesterday ratified the enlargement of NATO with the accession of Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic in a majority vote.
The membership of the three former eastern bloc countries, which were invited to join the 16-nation Alliance last year, must be ratified by all current member countries.
National Defence Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos said that the collapse of the Warsaw Pact had left a security void in eastern Europe, while the need for joint security made necessary the expansion of NATO with the incorporation of those countries.
Pointing out the need for security in crisis spots such as the Balkans, Mr. Tsohatzopoulos said NATO, in its new form, was evolving into a Euro-Atlantic security organisation.
Source: Athens News Agency