Erdogan maintains the threat of a Turkish veto on Sweden’s entry into NATO


(Updated §4-7 with meeting)

ANKARA, June 14 (Reuters) –

Sweden should not expect a change in Turkey’s position on its application for NATO membership at the alliance’s summit next month in Vilnius if it does not prevent anti-Turkish protests in Stockholm, said Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Turkey cannot have a positive approach to Sweden’s application for NATO membership while “terrorists” are demonstrating in Stockholm, the Turkish president, quoted on Wednesday, told journalists in the plane bringing him back from a trip to Azerbaijan on Tuesday.

The Turkish position will once again be made clear during a meeting on Wednesday in Ankara with Swedish representatives, he added.

At the end of this meeting, Sweden’s chief negotiator, Oscar Stenstrom, reported good discussions with his Turkish interlocutors, adding that negotiations aimed at overcoming Ankara’s objections would continue. He did not give a date.

“My job is to convince our interlocutors that we have done enough. I think we have,” he said. “But Turkey is not yet ready to make a decision and believes it needs further answers.”

In a statement, the Turkish presidency said the parties agreed to continue working on “concrete steps” towards Sweden’s integration.

Turkey ratified Finland’s NATO membership in March but continues, along with Hungary, to refuse Sweden’s membership.

Ankara criticizes Sweden for tolerating on its soil Kurdish organizations described as “terrorists” by Ankara. (Report by Ece Toksabay and Huseyin Hayatsever, French version Bertrand Boucey, edited by Blandine Hénault and Jean-Stéphane Brosse)

©2023 Thomson Reuters, all rights reserved. Reuters content is the intellectual property of Thomson Reuters or its third party content providers. Any copying, republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Thomson Reuters. Thomson Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. “Reuters” and the Reuters Logo are trademarks of Thomson Reuters and its affiliated companies.


Source link -87