German Foreign Minister Annalena Berbock called on Turkey and Hungary to stop blocking Sweden and Finland from joining NATO, writes Handelsblatt.
At a joint press conference with her Swedish counterpart Tobias Bjöllström, Burbok said that "there is no gray area" when it comes to the ratification of Sweden and Finland's accession to NATO. She added that Germany is "in full solidarity" with the desire of the Scandinavian countries to join the Alliance.
It is reported that 28 of the 30 NATO member states have already ratified the agreements on the acceptance of Finland and Sweden into the Alliance. However, Turkey continues to demand concrete commitments from the governments in Stockholm and Helsinki for closer cooperation in the fight against terrorism.
The issue was also the subject of discussions between Sweden's new Prime Minister, Ulf Kristersson, and Turkey's Head of State, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in Ankara on Wednesday, November 9. Billström said that the talks with Turkey were "very positive" and showed that "there is still a lot of room for dialogue." Soon he will continue negotiations in Ankara, the newspaper writes.
During a NATO summit in June, Sweden, Finland and Turkey signed a memorandum that effectively settled the counter-terrorism dispute. The governments of Stockholm and Helsinki have promised to extradite terrorism suspects to Turkey. But Erdogan is now demanding new concessions.
Meanwhile, Hungary announced on Wednesday that it intends to complete ratification by the end of the year.