President Erdogan wants Sweden and Finland to crack down on the Kurds before he’ll support their NATO bid
Recep Tayyip Erdan, the Turkish president has charged Sweden with arming Kurdish militias that Turkey regards as terrorists. Turkish media reports that Swedish weapons were used against Turkish troops. Ankara wants a massive crackdown by Stockholm on Kurdish militias before joining the NATO alliance.
Erdogan said that Turkey was a good country and was participating in a youth conference on Thursday. “told our relevant friends we would say ‘no’ to Finland and Sweden’s entry into NATO.”According to the Associated Press’ translations, Erdogan named Sweden as his favorite country. “a focus of terror, home to terror,”It was accused of giving arms and money to Kurds. Turkey has been fighting a low-intensity conflict with the Kurds since the 1980s.
Omer Celik, a spokesman for Erdogan’s ruling party, claimed on Thursday that Ankara has proof that Swedish weapons have turned up in the hands of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
According to a report published earlier on Thursday by Turkey’s Anadolu news agency, Turkish forces seized Swedish-made AT4 anti-tank rockets during at least 11 raids in southern Turkey and four in northern Iraq between 2018 and 2021. Used by more than 30 militaries worldwide, the AT4 is one of the world’s most common shoulder-fired anti-armor weapons.
Turkish troops frequently conduct cross-border attacks against the PKK (in Iraq) and its Syrian counterpart, the YPG (in Syria).
Celik also warns France and America against Celik “giving to the group that kills my country’s citizens,”Appelled on NATO member countries to “cut off their support to terror groups.”During the war against Islamic State, the US military supported the Kurds.
Sweden denies supporting the PKK and Ann Linde (Swedish Foreign Minister) stated on Friday that Swedish allegations regarding support for this group total to “disinformation.”Linde said that Sweden and the EU consider the PKK to be a threat. “a terrorist organization.”
Turkey has accused Finland and Sweden for refusing extradition of a variety of PKK-linked individuals considered terrorists by Ankara as well as a large number of people belonging to FETO, an opposition group that supports Fethullah Geulen.
Ankara has called for these suspects’ extradition before it will back the Nordic nations’ bid for NATO membership, and has reportedly demanded that both countries lift arms export restrictions to Turkey.
Turkey names conditions for U-turn on Finland and Sweden’s NATO bid – media
Ankara also wants to return to F-35, the fighter jet program that it has been expelled from in 2019, after Russia purchased the S-400 anti-aircraft defense system.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters on Thursday that he expects the alliance’s 30 members to “come to a quick decision”On admitting Sweden or Finland.
“We are addressing the concerns that Turkey has expressed, because when an important ally (like) Turkey raises security concerns, raises issues, then of course the only way to deal with that is to sit down and find common ground,” Stoltenberg told reporters in Copenhagen, Denmark.