Sweden cannot join NATO next week, as the alliance had hoped. The promised Turkish and Hungarian approval is still pending.
Turkey has informed NATO that the Swedish flag cannot yet be raised during a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels next week, diplomats said. This is what the Western military alliance was aiming for.
A NATO source speaks of disappointment. “This is disappointing, but we are still on track to accept Sweden soon.”
Sweden has been waiting for NATO membership for a year and a half. Turkey has long resisted this because, according to Ankara, the Scandinavian country must first take tougher measures against Kurdish militants. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan asked the Turkish parliament for approval last month, but that will take some time.
Sweden remains optimistic
The Hungarian Parliament must also approve Sweden’s membership. The country said earlier that it did not want to be the last to be obstructed and that it would follow Turkey’s decision, but it later changed its mind. Decisions by Hungary and Turkey were already expected sometime in recent weeks.
But Hungary will not make a decision next week, says Hungarian MP Agnes Vaday SVT Nyheter To the Swedish News Agency TT. It is not yet known when this will happen.
Defense Minister Pall Johnson said on Thursday that despite the uncertainty, Sweden remains optimistic. “We feel that we need to join the alliance as soon as possible and we hope that this will happen soon.”
Krijg meldingen bij nieuws over Zweden
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