Is it possible for Pakistan or India to join NATO?

What does the constitution of NATO?

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    My $2, I believe the territorial hassle over Kashmir will be a problem, because if a member of NATO is attacked the other should help. Both India and Pakistan consider the whole Kashmir to be them, so this would definitely be a major problem. Not mentioning that both countries aren't bordering any NATO member, but are both bordering China which can potentially be a threat to NATO. – Bregalad Jun 17 '15 at 6:50
  • Pakistan was a member of similar Asian military alliances against Communists such as SEATO and CENTO during Coldwar however India refrained from joining such alliances and stuck to Non-Aligned movement – NSNoob Feb 7 '17 at 11:08
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    @Bregalad Same case could be made about Turkey and Greece over Cyprus. Both Turkey and Greece were involved in Cyprus war in 1974 despite being NATO members. The point about China is interesting but doubt it servers either of them to be NATO partners against China as Pakistan is already a strategic partner of both China and NATO while India has strategic partnership with Russia and US to check the Chinese. – NSNoob Feb 7 '17 at 11:17
  • @NSNoob Definitely, however if I am not mistaken both Turkey and Greece were part of NATO before the Cyprus incident, so this incident couldn't have blocked NATO membership. – Bregalad Feb 7 '17 at 13:59

Apparently, no, since they are not European States.


The process of joining the alliance is governed by Article 10 of the North Atlantic Treaty, which allows only for the invitation of "other European States," and by subsequent agreements.

The North Atlantic Treaty:

Article 10
The Parties may, by unanimous agreement, invite any other European State in a position to further the principles of this Treaty and to contribute to the security of the North Atlantic area to accede to this Treaty. Any State so invited may become a Party to the Treaty by depositing its instrument of accession with the Government of the United States of America. The Government of the United States of America will inform each of the Parties of the deposit of each such instrument of accession.

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    I would think “unanimous agreement” and other aspects of the alliance weight even more heavily. After all, the treaty could be amended if there was a will. – Relaxed Jun 17 '15 at 15:02
  • @Relaxed, this makes a big sense; however, unanimous agreement does not prevent a new member to join, while the (pretty vague) definition of „European State“ does. – bytebuster for Long Usernames Jun 17 '15 at 16:12
  • Turkey is a NATO member (and that since the beginning) but is only very loosely an "European state": Only a small part of its territory is European, and the historical root of the country, language and culture are 100% asian. – Bregalad Jun 18 '15 at 21:37
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    @Bregalad, yes, if some evil state attempted to expand to Mid-East (like it tried to do earlier in Afghanistan), there may be a powerful lobby to quickly add India and Pakistan to NATO, and no formal definition of "European State" would be an obstacle. That's what happened to Turkey's NATO membership. However, in current situation, the answer is "No, because of Article 10". Does it make sense? – bytebuster for Long Usernames Feb 7 '17 at 14:26
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    @Bregalad You both have a point. I have to add however, NATO was not the only alliance of its nature. The US/UK-lead and backed anti-Communist alliances were region-based inherently. For Mid-East specifically, the similar Alliance was CENTO of which Pakistan, Iran and Turkey and Iraq were regional members with UK and US also being on board. Their organizational effectiveness as compared to NATO was poor but It did exist in the similar spirit (If not the capacity) of NATO. There would have been no need to induct Asian states into NATO for any reason. US could just form a new alliance instead. – NSNoob Feb 7 '17 at 15:49

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