Turkey blocks negotiations on Finland, Sweden's NATO entry

TEHRAN, May 18 (MNA) – Turkey has blocked NATO's decision to process requests by Finland and Sweden to join the bloc, media have reported.

Turkey has blocked NATO's decision to process requests by Finland and Sweden to join the bloc, Financial Times reported, citing a person "with direct knowledge of the matter," according to Sputnik.

NATO envoys met on Wednesday with the eye to launching accessions talks on the same day that Finland and Sweden submitted their applications but Turkey's opposition stopped any vote.

Earlier in the day, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on NATO allies to "respect" his country's concerns over Finland and Sweden's membership in the alliance.

Regarding the two Nordic countries' bid to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, he said it was "controversial for countries to support terrorism and expect our approval."

Sweden should not expect Turkey to approve its NATO bid without returning "terrorists", the president added, speaking at the governing Justice and Development Party's (AKP) parliamentary group meeting in Ankara.

KI/PR

News Code 186959

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