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Sweden, Finland push ahead with NATO bids as Turkey objects

 

Emmi Korhonen, Lehtikuva via AP

Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin, center, attends a parliamentary vote on the NATO membership, at the Finnish parliament in Helsinki, Tuesday, May 17, 2022. Sweden on Tuesday signed a formal request to join NATO, a day after the country announced it would seek membership in the 30-member military alliance. In neighboring Finland, lawmakers are expected later in the day to formally endorse Finnish leaders' decision also to join. The moves by the two Nordic countries, ending Sweden's more than 200 years of military nonalignment and Finland's nonalignment after World War II, have provoked the ire of the Kremlin.

STOCKHOLM - Sweden and Finland on Tuesday pushed ahead with their bids to join NATO even as Turkey insisted it won't let the previously nonaligned Nordic countries into the alliance because of their alleged support for Kurdish militants.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's strongly worded objections caught the two applicants and other NATO members off guard, complicating what was envisioned to be a swift expansion of the alliance in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

"Turkey's statements have changed very quickly and hardened in recent days. But I am sure that we will resolve the situation with constructive talks," Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said during a visit to Stockholm, the Swedish capital.

https://www.startribune.com/sweden-finland-push-ahead-with-nato-bids-as-turkey-objects/600173909/

 

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