Erdogan says Turkey will freeze Finland, Sweden’s NATO bids if promises not kept

Turkey has accused the two Nordic countries of supporting groups it deems terrorists.

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Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends a NATO summit in Madrid, Spain on June 30, 2022. (Susana Vera / Reuters File Photo)

ANKARA — Turkey will freeze Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership bids if the Nordic countries do not keep promises on counter-terrorism made last month, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday, adding he believed Sweden was “not showing a good image” for now.

Finland and Sweden applied for membership of the defense alliance in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but were met with opposition from Turkey, which accused the Nordic countries of supporting groups it deems terrorists.

The three countries signed an accord at the NATO summit in Madrid last month to lift Ankara’s veto in exchange for pledges on counter-terrorism and arms exports. Turkey has said it will closely monitor the implementation of the accord to ratify their membership bids.

Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu and Ezgi Erkoyun.