Türkiye poised to approve Sweden’s NATO membership this week, Bloomberg

President of Türkiye Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (Photo: Getty Images) © RBC-Ukraine (CA)

The Turkish Parliament intends to vote on Sweden’s NATO membership by the end of this week, according to Bloomberg.

The party of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, which has a majority in parliament, along with its nationalist ally, will seek parliamentary approval for the ratification of Sweden’s NATO membership, according to an anonymous official due to the sensitive nature of the issue.

If Türkiye approves this decision, Hungary will remain the last obstacle to the expansion of the bloc in Northern Europe. The entry of Sweden into NATO will strengthen the northern part of the organization and enhance its ability to defend the eastern flank after Finland joined the organization in April of this year.

Erdogan’s support for Sweden’s NATO membership is part of a complex network of geopolitical moves. His administration secured the support of U.S. President Joe Biden to acquire 40 new F-16 fighter jets and 79 upgrade kits for the existing fleet of combat aircraft. The White House made Sweden’s accession to the EU a mandatory condition for selling aircraft to Türkiye, and Erdogan stated that these two issues should be linked.

NATO membership for Sweden

Sweden applied for NATO membership last year. To become part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Stockholm’s application must be ratified by all member countries.

In response to Ankara’s demands, Stockholm strengthened its counterterrorism laws. At the end of November, the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Türkiye would approve the application “within weeks.”

On December 26, the Turkish parliament’s foreign affairs committee finally approved Sweden’s application to join NATO. The final decision rests with the General Assembly of the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye (parliament).

It is worth noting that on January 1, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg expressed confidence that Sweden would become part of the Alliance by July 2024.

Source: RBC Ukraine