Saturday June 25, 2022

Finland, Sweden to discuss NATO bids with Turkey on Wednesday

Published : 24 May 2022, 21:09

Updated : 24 May 2022, 21:50

  DF Report

Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto on Tuesday spoke at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. Photo: Ministry for Foreign Affairs/ WEF.

Finland and Sweden will hold meetings with Turkey in Ankara on Wednesday to negotiate the issues regarding their NATO membership bids, reported agency.

Finnish and Swedish delegations will visit Turkey to discuss the issues, said Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto on Tuesday in a panel discussion at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland.

"We are sending our delegations to visit Ankara, actually both Sweden and Finland. This will happen tomorrow (Wednesday) so the dialogue is continuing," Haavisto said.

Turkish Foreign Ministry said that Turkish Presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin and Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal will meet with Finnish and Swedish officials on Wednesday, reported news agency Xinhua.

Meanwhile, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Tuesday demanded a "written agreement" from Finland and Sweden on the issues, if the two countries want Turkey´s support to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), according to Xinhua.

"We expect them to end support for terrorism and to lift defense restrictions," Turkey's NTV broadcaster quoted Cavusoglu as telling reporters on his flight to Palestine and Israel.

"They said 'We can take concrete steps.' We want a written agreement," the Turkish minister said, adding Ankara demands "assurances" in a signed agreement.

A four-way meeting can be held by the three countries with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in this regard, said Cavusoglu.

Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto on Sunday expressed his optimism about resolving the issues with Turkey regarding Finland´s NATO membership application.

Earlier on Saturday, President Sauli Niinistö held a telephone conversation with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and discussed Finland’s NATO membership application.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on 13 May said that it was not possible for Turkey to support the possible NATO membership applications by Finland and Sweden.

Turkey has blocked discussions on Finland and Sweden's NATO accession hours after the countries officially launched their bids to join the alliance.

On 19 May, Erdogan said that Turkey would say "no" to Finland and Sweden's NATO membership bid, as the country would not make the same "mistake" again.