Türkiye can still block Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership, says Erdogan

Edited By: Sayan Ghosh
New Delhi, India Updated: Jul 01, 2022, 05:07 AM(IST)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a press conference after a cabinet meeting at the Presidential Complex in Ankara Photograph:( AFP )

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At the end of the NATO Summit in Madrid, Erdogan made it clear that the 10-article agreement with both the countries was a victory for his country and any change in the terms can result in Türkiye once again taking away their support.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday that Türkiye can still block Finland and Sweden from becoming NATO members if the two countries fail to “meet his expectations”. At the end of the NATO Summit in Madrid, Erdogan made it clear that the 10-article agreement with both the countries was a victory for his country and any change in the terms can result in Türkiye once again taking away their support. The Turkish President added that the best part of the agreements was the extradition of terror suspects with links to Kurdish groups, according to Associated Press.

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The Turkish parliament still need to ratify the deal reached by the three countries and till then, the government still has the chance to go back on their words and block the NATO membership bid.

“This business will not work if we don’t pass this in our parliament. First, Sweden and Finland must fulfil their duties and those are already in the text ... But if they don’t fulfil these, then of course there is no way we would send it to our parliament,” Erdogan said according to AP.

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In the press conference, Erdogan told the journalists that Sweden will be extraditing 73 people who are suspected members of the Kurdistan Workers’ party (PKK) – a body listed as terrorists by both the European Union (EU) and the United States.

“Of course, what we understand is important from our meetings and talks,” Erdogan said according to the report. “Sweden promised to give us these 73 people with this text. They may or they may not, we will follow that through the text, and we will make our decision.”

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(With inputs from agencies)

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