Turkey's ratification of Sweden's Nato bid hit by new delay

TT/The Local
TT/The Local - [email protected]
Turkey's ratification of Sweden's Nato bid hit by new delay
Nato and Swedish flags side by side at the Swedish prime ministerial residence Harpsund in summer 2022. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Turkey's foreign affairs committee on Thursday postponed a vote on Sweden's Nato accession to a later date, with the official explanation being that the issue had not "matured" enough.


"For all of our lawmakers to approve Sweden's Nato membership, they need to be fully convinced. We will discuss all of these in our (next) commission meeting (on the issue)," chairman of the committee Fuat Oktay said, according to Reuters.

The original plan was for the committee to either approve or reject Sweden's bid to join Nato after the debate, but after hours of lively discussion, two members of the governing party adjourned proceedings until an unspecified later date.

According to sources speaking to TT newswire, the delayed decision is linked to Turkey's interest in buying F-16 jets from the US. The sale of the F-16 jets has not yet been discussed in the American senate, which Turkey had expected would occur if they agreed to ratify Sweden's application.

By delaying the decision, Turkey hopes to put additional pressure on the USA.

Another reason behind the delay, TT's source said, is to give Hungary more time to ratify Sweden's application in its parliament.

If the defence committee greenlights Sweden's application, the issue will go to the Turkish parliament and then President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will have to formally approve ratification before the document can be sent to Washington.


Hungary and Turkey are the only Nato countries left which need to approve Sweden’s application, and Hungarian president Viktor Orbán has pledged previously that his country will not be the last to ratify.

Hungarian minister Gergely Gulyás recently demanded that Sweden explain comments made by Swedish politicians about the state of Hungarian democracy, although the country has not formally said it will delay Sweden’s application further.

Nato's secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg has highlighted next Nato meeting of foreign ministers in Brussels on November 28th and 29th, as a possible date by which Sweden could be a full member.

It is now a year and a half since Sweden applied for Nato membership.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also