Turkey warns Finland and Sweden should ‘take steps’ earlier than becoming a member of NATO

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan instructed Alliance President Jens Stoltenberg on Friday that Turkey wouldn’t formally settle for Finland and Sweden’s membership in NATO till the 2 international locations had taken the required “steps”.

Ankara has accused the Scandinavian international locations of offering a protected haven to outlawed Kurdish militants it considers “terrorists” and has declined to certify their membership in NATO regardless of an settlement in June.

The Turkish presidency stated, “President Erdogan indicated that the steps that Sweden and Finland will take will decide how rapidly the approval course of … and when it ends.”

Erdogan and Stoltenberg held a non-public assembly in Istanbul that was closed to the media.

Finland and Sweden deserted a long time of army nonalignment and scrambled to turn into members of NATO in Might, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

However Erdogan threatened to dam their bids and ask for concessions, which led to an settlement in June between Turkey, Finland and Sweden that included provisions on extradition and data sharing.

Sweden’s new prime minister, Ulf Christerson, will go to Ankara on Tuesday to satisfy Erdogan on a visit that Stockholm hopes will result in Turkey’s approval.

The alliance stated in an announcement on Friday that Stoltenberg “welcomed the foremost concrete steps already taken by the 2 international locations to place the memorandum into impact, and emphasised that their accession would make NATO stronger.”

On Thursday, the NATO chief stated the accession of Finland and Sweden was essential to “ship a transparent message to Russia” throughout a press convention with Turkey’s overseas minister.

All 30 NATO member states besides Turkey and Hungary have ratified the accession of Sweden and Finland.

New members of the alliance want unanimous approval.

(AFP)

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