Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday he would not approve of Sweden and Finland joining NATO if they sanctioned Ankara.
“First of all, we would not say ‘yes’ to those who impose sanctions on Turkey’s membership in NATO, which is a security organization. Because then NATO would no longer remain a security organization, it would become a place where the representatives of terror are concentrated,” Erdogan said.
Speaking at a press conference in Ankara, Erdogan said the Swedish and Finnish delegations should not worry about coming to Turkey to try to convince Turkey to approve the country’s NATO membership.
Turkey’s foreign minister held “a few” meetings with his Swedish and Finnish counterparts, Erdogan said, adding that neither country had a clear position against terrorist organizations.
“Even though they say ‘we are against them’, on the contrary, they have statements saying that they are not handing over the terrorists they have to hand over to Turkey,” he said.
He added that Sweden is a “nest” for terrorist organizations, saying it allows terrorists to speak out in parliaments.
“They have special invitations to terrorists. They even have pro-PKK deputies in their parliaments. How are we going to trust them?
Erdogan reiterated the same stance last week when he told a press conference in Istanbul that he did not see the prospect of Finland and Sweden’s “positive” NATO membership. , accusing the two countries of harboring Kurdish “terrorist organisations”.
The PKK, or Kurdistan Workers’ Party, which seeks to create an independent state in Turkey, has been waging an armed struggle with Turkey for decades and has been designated a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.