Sweden and Finland sign NATO accession protocols

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Finland and Sweden sign accession protocols to the North Atlantic Alliance on Tuesday, and the 30 NATO member states will launch the ratification process, a historic decision for the two Nordic countries, determined by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Accession Protocols will then go to all NATO countries for ratification, according to their national procedures.

Finland and Sweden completed accession talks at NATO Headquarters in Brussels on Monday (4 July 2022), as agreed last week by NATO leaders at their Summit in Madrid. Both countries formally confirmed their willingness and ability to meet the political, legal and military obligations and commitments of NATO membership.

Turkey has agreed to launch the procedure at the NATO leaders’ summit in Madrid, but President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has reminded the two Nordic countries of the conditions to be met. “If they carry out their task, we will submit (the memorandum) to the Turkish parliament” for adoption, but “if they do not, it is out of the question to send it to parliament,” he told a press conference.

Erdogan evoked a “Swedish promise” to extradite “73 terrorists.”  Ankara has been calling on Stockholm for several years to extradite Kurdish militants and people close to the movement founded by preacher Fethullah Gülen, accused by Turkish authorities of fueling the July 2016 coup attempt.

Sweden and Finland are members of the European Union, but the agreement signed in Madrid “employs only the three countries,” Nabila Massrali, a spokeswoman for European Foreign Minister Josep Borrell, said on Monday. “Anti-terrorism legislation is a sovereign right of states, but it must respect fundamental rules and rights. Turkey has a broad interpretation of its anti-terrorism legislation and it takes the opportunity to arrest all critics, journalists, lawyers, human rights defenders. human rights, “she told reporters.

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