Finland says Nato membership incomplete without Sweden, as Turkey lifts veto
Guardian, 18 Mar 2023
Turkey's president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, announced that his country would lift its bloc on Finland's Nato membership on Friday, during a visit by the Finnish president, Sauli Niinistö, to Ankara, but did not budge on Sweden, whose hopes of joining the military alliance have been frustrated by Turkish security concerns about alleged PKK activities in the country.
The Turkish president told reporters at a press conference: 'We have decided to initiate the ratification of Finland's accession process to Nato in our parliament, following the sensitivity and progress of Finland in addressing our security concerns.' On Sweden, Erdoğan added: 'We will continue our talks with Sweden on the basis of the alliance's principles and our approach to the fight against terrorism.'
Niinistö welcomed the decision but emphasised that Finland's membership was not complete without Sweden's. He said: 'We have so much common interest having been neighbours and having the Baltic Sea area on our shore'
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