Sweden and Finland must not allow anti-Turkey propaganda to be realized in their countries, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said on Wednesday, underlining that Ankara has not seen the necessary steps for the Nordic countries’ NATO accession.
“These two countries have to fulfill their promises and the articles found in the memorandum of understanding. So far, we have not seen any steps,” Çavuşoğlu said during a live interview with TV100, indicating that Turkey holds a veto right.
Saying that all NATO member countries must now approve the accession of Sweden and Finland, Çavuşoğlu elaborated that the protocol is currently at the foreign ministry.
“If obligations are fulfilled, it will be sent to the president and he will send it to Parliament. Of course, Parliament will decide, but it cannot be sent right now.”
Turkey, Sweden and Finland pledged to tackle terrorism after Ankara had previously voiced objections to the countries joining NATO due to their support for terrorist organizations.
Spurred by Russia's war on Ukraine, the two countries applied to join NATO in May, shedding their traditional neutrality.
A trilateral agreement signed among the countries in June stipulates that Finland and Sweden will not provide support to the YPG, the PKK's Syrian offshoot, or to FETÖ, the group behind the 2016 defeated coup in Turkey, and that Ankara extends full support to Finland and Sweden against threats to their national security.
Within the scope of the deal, Turkey has also demanded that the two countries extradite wanted individuals and lift arms restrictions imposed after Turkey’s 2019 military incursion into northeast Syria.
However, Çavuşoğlu said Sweden has not extradited suspects over terrorism-related charges yet.
Turkey has sought the extradition of 73 people from Sweden and a dozen others from Finland.