The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Finland, Pekka Haavisto, said that a time-out for several weeks is necessary in the negotiations between Finland and Sweden with Turkey regarding their accession to NATO.
He said this in an interview with Reuters.
"The process is delayed, after all, until the elections in Turkey, that is, until mid-May. It is difficult to say how events will develop after that. Yesterday I spoke with the Turkish Foreign Minister and I got the impression that the religious protests caused shock and anger on the Turkish side. This will affect their decision," said the head of the Finnish Foreign Ministry.
In turn, Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Björström told the media on Tuesday that he was in contact with Finland to clarify his colleague's statement.
Later, Haavisto added that both countries are making progress in the agreements, and he welcomes the joint application to NATO.
In May 2022, Sweden and Finland renounced their traditional neutrality against the backdrop of Russia's military invasion of Ukraine and submitted applications to join NATO. To date, among all the members of the Alliance, only Hungary and Turkey have not accepted their applications.
The Prime Minister of Hungary, Viktor Orbán, promised a positive decision of the parliament in this regard "soon". At the same time, Turkey is blocking the entry, arguing that Stockholm and Helsinki have not fulfilled their obligations regarding the extradition of alleged Kurdish extremists.