The Sweden that laughs and the Sweden that grimaces. Following the Turkish agreement to NATO membership of this country of 10.5 million inhabitants, announced Monday 10 July evening, in Vilnius, by Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary General of the Alliance, the first Minister Ulf Kristersson and most of the leaders of the main Swedish political parties welcomed the news, after more than a year of painful and often humiliating negotiations for the Scandinavian kingdom.
On the official side, it’s time for satisfaction. “I am very happy about this important step, said Ulf Kristersson from Vilnius after celebrating the agreement over a beer with his collaborators. Even if the champagne will wait until one is a full member of NATO. » Magdalena Andersson, Leader of the Opposition and Social Democrat Prime Minister, who started the membership application process in 2022, was also happy for Sweden’s safety: “It is positive that all Nordic countries are now part of the same defense union”which Swedish Defense Minister Pal Jonson also pointed out, noting that “the entire northern flank of NATO will be reinforced”.
But there are also many who wonder what the price will be. As early as 1994, Sweden had joined the Partnership for Peace, the antechamber of the Alliance. It has participated for almost thirty years in its military exercises, and its procedures and equipment are already largely compatible with those of NATO. But in addition to the erasure of two hundred years of neutrality and freedom of alliance, without the slightest debate, the renunciation of fundamental values worries, after months of submission to Turkish demands. “Sweden is going to have a new identity, thus declared Pierre Schori, former minister and social-democratic diplomat who was in particular one of the relatives of Olof Palme, the ex-prime minister cantor of the third way between East and West. An identity where we will sell weapons to countries at war and where we betray freedom fighters. »
“The Turks used Sweden as a ram”
Among the concessions made to Ankara, Stockholm lifted the embargo on the delivery of arms to Turkey in place since 2019. An anti-terrorism law that came into force on 1er June also allowed Sweden’s High Court of Justice to authorize the deportation of a 35-year-old man convicted of a drug offense in Turkey – even though he claims he is implicated for his pro-PKK sympathies , the Kurdistan Workers’ Party hunted down by the Turkish regime beyond its borders.
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