July 3 (UPI) -- Sweden and Finland has joined a British-led Joint Expeditionary Force for dealing with crises around the world.
The force, which will number about 10,000 troops, is made up of personnel from Britain, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, and Norway.
The Joint Expeditionary Force, started in 2015, becomes operational next year. The JEF concept is distinct from existing international organizations. It can operate alone, but has the ability to integrate with other multinational high-readiness forces.
Sweden and Finland were welcomed to the JEF by British Defense Secretary Sir Michael Fallon during an official signing event at Karlberg Castle, in Stockholm, Sweden.
"This is a Force of Friends, and alongside Sweden, Finland, and our other partners in this force, we remain committed to security, in Europe and around the world," Fallon said in press release.
Included in its mission would be response to natural and humanitarian crises, such as the Ebola outbreak in Africa, when a Dutch ship worked alongside the Royal Navy, and the Norwegians provided twice weekly C130 flights to support the UK response to the crisis.