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To join NATO, Finland and Sweden need to seek unanimous approval from all 30 member states, however, their membership is being opposed by Ankara.
Over the course of last week, negotiations were held concerning the candidatures of Sweden and Finland to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), in which a concensus was not reached, said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
"Unfortunately, the talks held by our delegation with Finland and Sweden did not reach the desired level," Erdogan was quoted as saying by Anadolu Agency.
The Turkish leader also claimed that neither Sweden nor Finland have taken the necessary steps on Ankara's demands, and stressed that terrorists are still walking the streets of Stockholm under Swedish protection.
"We cannot repeat the mistakes made in the past by admitting countries that embrace and nurture these terrorists into NATO, which is a security organization," the president emphasized.
President #Erdogan says Turkey’s talks last week with #Finnish and #Swedish delegations were not at the “expected level” and Ankara cannot say yes to “terrorism-supporting” countries entering NATO, state broadcaster TRT Haber reports.https://t.co/xHdMJChC5i
The military operation launched by Russia in Ukraine on February 24 last forced Finland and Sweden to rethink their traditional policy of neutrality and swayed public opinion in favor of NATO membership, subsequently, submitting their applications to join NATO on May 18.
Their membership is opposed by Ankara, demanding that Helsinki and Stockholm withdraw support for the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK, outlawed in Turkey for terrorist activity), and the restrictions on arms sales they imposed following Turkey's 2019 offensive on Kurdish YPG militias in northern Syria.
On May 25, Turkey hosted consultations in Ankara with delegations from both countries on their NATO candidacies. To join the Atlantic Alliance, Finland and Sweden need to seek unanimous approval from all 30 member states.
On the other hand, Russian President Vladimir Putin plans to hold a telephone conversation with Erdogan on Monday, May 30, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
Erdogan earlier conveyed his intention to hold a conversation on May 30 with Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelensky.