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Tuesday, October 3, 2023

AbroadYesterday, 10:102 Erdogan will continue to prevent Sweden from joining NATO

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Photograph: Reuters/ScanPix

Turkey’s current president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who must fight for his position in next week’s runoff election, has promised to continue to block Sweden’s accession to NATO.

In an interview with the US broadcaster CNN, Erdogan repeatedly accused Sweden of harboring representatives of terrorist organizations.

He stated that he could not support Sweden to join the alliance while “continuing to allow derivatives of Turkish terror groups to freely settle in Sweden and roam the streets of Stockholm”.

“We are not ready for Sweden right now.”

While Erdogan won the first round with 49.52 percent of the vote, 44.88 percent of Turks voted for the joint presidential candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. The second round of elections is expected to be held on 28 May.

Last year, after Russia’s repeated invasion of Ukraine, Finland and Sweden ended decades of neutrality and declared their accession to NATO.

At the end of June last year, NATO formally invited Finland and Sweden to join and started the admission approval process for all 30 countries. However, Türkiye and Hungary slowed down the process.

After long negotiations, Turkey, which has the second largest army in NATO, said it was ready to ratify the membership of the two countries, but introduced a series of provisions for the “fight against terrorism”. Hungary also voiced its objections.

Finland managed to reach an agreement with Ankara and Budapest and officially became the 31st member of NATO on 4 April.

Meanwhile, Sweden’s NATO accession process is still frozen. In March, Hungary demanded that Sweden stop criticizing it. Sweden replied that Stockholm’s position on Hungary is not different from that of Finland, whose application for admission has been approved, and that the country will not give any guarantees.

In line with Turkey’s demands, Sweden adopted the new anti-terrorism law that will come into force on 1 June. After that, Turkey plans to evaluate Sweden’s progress in meeting the requirements.

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Source: Tv Net

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