With a surprising development, the Swedish government sent a letter to its Turkish counterpart in on the security conditions of Ankara which it requires prior to its final approval of Stockholm’s accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) with Finland, as both European countries have tried to join NATO since the outbreak of the Russian war- Ukraine about eight months ago, but the differences between Ankara and Stockholm prevent it, so this message turns the page on the tensions between the two sides?
In its letter to the Turkish government, Sweden revealed that it has taken concrete measures to address Ankara’s security problems in change of its approval to join NATO, without specifically announcing the measures it had taken, related to the surrender of fighters from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and figures close to the party from the Turkish side, as well as to surrender members of the movement “Service” led by Turkish preacher Fethullah Gulen, whom President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accuses of being behind the failed coup attempt that took place in mid-July 2016.
Turkish academic and international relations expert Ilhan Ozgal felt that “the Turkish side will oppose Sweden’s accession to NATO until next summer, when the country will witness decisive presidential and parliamentary elections, and therefore Ankara is exploiting this. dossier to obtain concessions from the West and the United States and also to use this file in internal affairs. ” “.
Ozgal told Al Arabiya.net that “finally obtaining concessions from Sweden will strengthen Erdogan’s image among his supporters”, adding that “the Turkish president wants to show himself to his supporters as a leader who has managed to defeat his opponents abroad, and is therefore procrastinating on the question of Sweden’s membership of NATO.
A European diplomatic source told Al-Arabiya.net that this message would lead to an acceleration of negotiations between the Swedish and Turkish sides, mainly focused on security issues related to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party and the Service Movement.
Ankara has not yet responded to the message from the Swedish government, but well-informed Turkish sources have indicated to “Al Arabiya.net”that the Turkish side, in its pending reply, will adhere to its conditions relating to the extradition of wanted persons according to a list prepared months ago.
According to Reuters, Stockholm has pledged in Ankara to accelerate efforts to fight “terrorism” against the “PKK”, which Ankara classifies as a “terrorist” group and which has led an armed rebellion against it since 1984, but has so far he did not deliver any members of “Kurdistan” to Ankara.
Although Stockholm indicated in its letter to the Turkish government that it had handed him a wanted Turkish citizen, questThe latter was not a member of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, but rather a businessman accused of defrauding a number of local banks and banks in the nation.
The Swedish government requires its Turkish counterpart to submit documents and prove confirming that the wanted persons have engaged in “terrorist” activities in exchange of permission for them to be extradited in Turkey and repatriated to its territory if they had not obtained Swedish citizenship first.
The extradition of the wanted in Turkey would lead to accelerating the Stockholm and Helsinki accession process to NATO, after months of discussions between the various parts of this military alliance.
On 5 October, the Turkish Foreign Ministry summoned the Swedish ambassador to Ankara over a program broadcast on state television that showed content that it described as offensive towards Turkey and its president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who returned a few days earlier, he reiterated his threat that his country will not ratify Sweden and Finland’s application for NATO membership, until the promises made by the two countries are kept.
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