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Turkish Parliament approves Sweden’s bid to join NATO

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After months of delays, Sweden’s NATO membership petition was approved by the Turkish parliament on Tuesday, moving the Nordic nation one step closer to joining the military alliance.

Out of the 346 parliamentarians that cast ballots, 287 supported Sweden’s entry and 55 opposed it. Four more people did not cast a ballot.

Following the bid’s approval by the Foreign Affairs Commission of the parliament last month, the vote constituted the second stage of Turkey’s ratification procedure. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the president of Turkey, can now formally ratify the protocol.

The decision on Tuesday removed a major obstacle to the Nordic nation’s membership in the military alliance; as a result, Hungary will now be the only member state that has not yet approved Sweden’s membership.

To discuss the conditions of Sweden’s membership, Victor Orban, the prime minister of Hungary, announced on Tuesday that he had extended an invitation to Ulf Kristersson, the prime minister of Sweden, to visit Hungary.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine earlier in 2022, Sweden and Finland applied to join NATO in May of that same year. NATO’s border with Russia was doubled when Finland joined the organization in April 2023, but Sweden’s admission process has been beset with setbacks.

Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, attends the Direct Line Q&A session and his yearly end-of-year news conference at the Gostiny Dvor Exhibition Centre in Moscow.

Putin alerts us to issues with Finland, a neighbor, claiming that the West “dragged it into NATO.”
At first, Erdogan opposed Sweden’s application for membership, claiming that the country’s leaders were too forgiving of extremist organizations like the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). After submitting an application, Sweden pledged to cooperate more closely with Turkey on security-related issues and strengthened its anti-terror laws.

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Erdogan has said that he won’t sign the protocol into law until the US approves the sale of F-16 fighter fighters to Turkey, so his support of Sweden’s application for membership also depends on US commitment.

Ben Cardin, the chair of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, stated on Tuesday that Congress will not take action on the issue until the accession documents are finalized.

Sweden’s prime minister, Lars Kristersson, declared that his country was “one step closer to becoming a full member of NATO” after Tuesday’s parliamentary vote in Turkey.

In a post on X, US Ambassador to Turkey Jeffry Flake echoed the sentiment, stating that he “greatly appreciates the Turkish parliament’s decision to approve Sweden’s entry into NATO” and that “Sweden’s accession to NATO is a critical step in strengthening the alliance.”

The result of the Turkish parliamentary vote was welcomed by the German government. In a statement, the spokesman for the federal government, Steffen Hebestreit, stated that Sweden’s “forthcoming accession” and Finland’s April entry were a “direct reaction to the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine.”


For Diaspora Digital Media Updates click on Whatsapp, or Telegram. For eyewitness accounts/ reports/ articles, write to: citizenreports@diasporadigitalmedia.com. Follow us on X (Fomerly Twitter) or Facebook

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