General

No major issues with Finland’s NATO bid, maybe some with Sweden: Finnish premier

There are no major issues with Finland’s NATO membership bid, but there could be some with Sweden, Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin said on Tuesday.

The membership process should have been faster, she told a panel at Davos, adding that both countries are fully prepared and have ticked all boxes.

Asked if there are any obstacles, such as Türkiye’s objections over its security concerns, she said: “There isn’t that big of an issue with Finland, maybe some with Sweden. But from our perspective, it’s very important that Sweden, Finland are going to NATO together because we are sharing the same security environment.”

Under a memorandum signed last June between Türkiye, Sweden, and Finland, the two Nordic countries pledged to take steps against terrorists in order to gain membership in the NATO alliance, which they are seeking in light of the Ukraine war.

Unanimous agreement from all NATO members – including Türkiye, a member for more than 70 years – is needed for any new members to be admitted to the alliance.

Türkiye has praised some steps taken by Sweden and Finland but says the countries need to do more, particularly in the wake of a provocative terrorist demonstration last week in Stockholm, which directly threatened Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

“We are still waiting for two countries. One of them is Hungary, which will ratify as soon as their parliamentary period begins,” Marin said.

“Türkiye, that’s another matter. We discussed and agreed at the NATO summit the steps that we will take and we have taken those steps. Now we are waiting for Türkiye to ratify,” she added.

Source: Anadolu Agency