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News > Turkey

Turkey Raises Demands to Sweden on Its NATO Bid

  • Turkey has rejected the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO on the grounds that both nations host autonomy-seeking Kurdish groups that Ankara considers terrorists. May. 24, 2022.

    Turkey has rejected the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO on the grounds that both nations host autonomy-seeking Kurdish groups that Ankara considers terrorists. May. 24, 2022. | Photo: Twitter/@Mousacisse

Published 24 May 2022 (22 hours 17 minutes ago)
Opinion

An official Turkish government list sets out five demands that Sweden must meet in order to obtain Turkey's support for its NATO membership application.

On Tuesday, Turkey said that the aim is to secure through these demands the severing of Sweden's relations with groups connected to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which Ankara, the European Union and the United States have blacklisted as a terrorist group. 

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Turkey demands that Sweden end political support for terrorism, eliminate the source of funding for terrorism, stop supporting the Kurdistan Workers' Party and the Kurdish Democratic Union Party with arms, as well as lift embargoes and sanctions against Turkey and engage in global efforts against terrorism.    

Ahead of Turkey's list of demands, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged that the country's national interests be respected and that NATO allies take real steps to address Turkey's pressing concerns. In this vein, the president also warned against NATO expansion, which he said will benefit neither Turkey nor the bloc in general.  

Erdogan further referred to the sanctions imposed on Turkey, saying that "there is no way we can put aside the issue of Sweden's sanctions against [Turkey]. There is no reasonable explanation for them." 

According to media reports, Ankara has specifically called for the lifting of sanctions imposed on Turkey following its decision to purchase the S-400 anti-aircraft defense system from Russia, after the U.S. stalled talks on the sale of its Patriot systems.   

Earlier, Turkey held up the launching of NATO discussions necessary to approve Sweden's and Finland's applications, which were submitted on May 15. The Turkish president demanded that the Nordic countries recognize the PKK as a terrorist group, however, both states refused to accept this demand.

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