Turkey’s Erdogan agrees to back Swedish NATO bid: Stoltenberg | NATO News




NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg announces that President Erdogan agreed to forward Sweden’s bid to Turkey’s parliament.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has agreed to back Sweden’s bid to join NATO after a year of blocking the move citing Turkish security concerns.

NATO leader Jens Stoltenberg announced on Monday that Erdogan agreed to forward Sweden’s membership bid for the alliance to Turkey’s parliament.

After talks in Vilnius, Lithuania, with Erdogan and Sweden’s Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson, Stoltenberg said Turkey had agreed to move forward.

“I’m glad to announce … President Erdogan has agreed to forward the accession protocol for Sweden to the grand national assembly as soon as possible, and work closely with the assembly to ensure ratification,” Stoltenberg told a news conference.

“This is a historic day.”

Sweden’s NATO accession has been held up by objections from Turkey since last year, accusing Stockholm of harbouring Kurdish activists Ankara regards as “terrorists”.

But a statement issued after three-way talks stated Turkey and Sweden would work closely in “counter-terrorism coordination” and also boost bilateral trade ties.

Earlier on Monday, Erdogan upped the stakes further by demanding that the European Union revive Turkey’s stalled EU membership bid as a precondition for Sweden joining NATO.

“Sweden will actively support efforts to reinvigorate Turkiye’s EU accession process,” the statement said.


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