Turkey ratifies Finland's accession to NATO separately from Sweden – Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that his country will ratify the protocol on Finland's accession to NATO separately from Sweden. Work on the ratification of the Swedish application will continue.
He stated this at a joint press conference with Finnish President Sauli Niinistö, who arrived on an official visit to Turkey.
Finland's accession to NATO will be ratified separately
The Turkish President said that Finland has now taken all the specific steps necessary to join the Alliance. Erdogan also expressed hope that this partnership will play an active role in supporting global security.
However, negotiations with Sweden will continue. Niinistö stressed during the joint conference that Finland's accession to NATO without Sweden would be incomplete.
Sweden and Turkey will continue to work towards ratifying the application for admission. Erdogan stressed that his country has no bias towards the Swedes. However, Sweden has not yet extradited the individuals whom Turkey classifies as terrorists, he said.
At the same time, the Prime Minister of Finland said that she would do everything possible to ensure that Turkey also ratified the application of Sweden.
NATO reacted to Turkey's decision
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg believes that Turkey's decision to ratify Finland's membership in NATO strengthens the security of the countries.
I look forward to the speedy completion of the accession process and the speedy accession of Finland and Sweden to the NATO family as full members,” Stoltenberg said.
When Sweden and Finland can become members of NATO
- Finland and Sweden may become NATO members as early as June this year. The Secretary General of the alliance says that the countries have fulfilled their obligations, so it's time to complete the ratification process.
- Finland and Sweden will be officially accepted into NATO in the summer. The countries are expected to formally join the alliance at a summit on July 11 in Vilnius.
- The January protests with the burning of the Koran in Stockholm had a negative impact on the process of ratification of the application for membership in NATO. Although there have been several rounds of trilateral negotiations between the countries, Sweden still remains “overboard”.