Turkey warns that Finland’s NATO process Sweden can be “frozen”

Turkey’s Ankara (AP) —Turkey’s President Legep Typ Erdogan said Sweden and Finland could “freeze” NATO accession unless both countries take steps to meet Ankara’s security requirements.

Turkey lifted opposition to its alliance Sweden and Finland last month, but with a link to an illegal Kurdish group or a network of exiled clergy accused of organizing a failed coup in 2016. He warned that if he did not hand over the suspect, he would block the process.

Membership in the Nordic countries must be approved by the parliaments of all 30 NATO member states, and the Turkish parliament may refuse to ratify the agreement.

“I would like to remind you that if these countries do not take the necessary steps to meet our requirements, they will freeze the (affiliation) process,” Erdogan said in a television speech after the Cabinet meeting. .. “Our stance on this issue is very clear. The rest is up to them.”

Prime Minister Erdogan said Sweden in particular did not “project a good image”, but did not elaborate.

There was no immediate reaction from Sweden and Finland to Prime Minister Erdogan’s comments.

Turkey has accused both countries of being too generous to groups that it considers a national security threat. Turkey’s Minister of Justice said earlier this month that the government had renewed the request for the delivery of suspected terrorists that his country had hoped for.

Turkey, Sweden and Finland were able to advance the alliance by signing a joint memorandum of understanding at the NATO summit last month, inviting Scandinavian countries to a military alliance aimed at expanding and strengthening in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. ..

In the Memorandum of Understanding, Finland and Sweden agreed to “promptly and thoroughly address the pending deportation or delivery request of suspected terrorists in accordance with the European Convention on Extradition of Criminals” in Turkey.