The meeting in August will evaluate the Nordic countries' progress made in fulfilling Ankara's counter-terrorism demands in order to ratify their NATO membership bid.
On Thursday, Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu announced that Türkiye, Finland and Sweden will hold a meeting in August to evaluate the Nordic countries' anti-terror pledges required by Ankara for lifting its veto on their NATO membership bid.
The meeting in August will evaluate the Nordic countries' progress made in fulfilling Ankara's counter-terrorism demands in order to ratify their NATO membership bid, Cavusoglu said in an interview with the state-run TRT broadcaster.
The minister reiterated that the Turkish parliament may reject their accession process if Finland and Sweden do not keep their promises.
NATO's 30 member states signed accession protocols for Sweden and Finland in early July, starting the process to admit the two Nordic countries into the military alliance. The next step is for the parliaments of all NATO members to ratify their accession to NATO.
NATO is loving Ukraine War. Survey shows vast majority of #EU citizens want Peace, rather than promote a War to punish Russia - But NATO never wants Peace. With US + Russia, we now have 2 factions of Capitalist Imperialism waging War, with millions of Workers caught in middle... pic.twitter.com/jHFsrgYrMN— Mick Wallace (@wallacemick) July 10, 2022
Finland and Sweden's NATO bid was initially blocked by Türkiye, which accused them of "supporting" terrorist groups as they rejected Ankara's extradition requests for suspects affiliated with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the Gulen Movement.
On June 28, Türkiye, Sweden and Finland agreed on a memorandum of understanding (MoU) before Ankara lifted its veto ahead of the NATO Madrid summit. In the MoU, Finland and Sweden pledged to support Türkiye's fight against terrorism, and agreed to address Türkiye's "pending deportation or extradition requests of terror suspects expeditiously and thoroughly."
The PKK has been rebelling against the Turkish government for over three decades. The Gulen movement is led by the U.S.-based Muslim preacher Fethullah Gulen who is regarded by his followers as a spiritual leader. Türkiye accuses the Gulen movement of masterminding the 2016 failed coup in which at least 250 people were killed.