Turkish Parliament unlikely to vote on Sweden's NATO bid for weeks

Turkish Parliament unlikely to vote on Sweden’s NATO bid for weeks

ISTANBUL: Türkiye’s parliament is unlikely to hold a full vote on Sweden’s bid to join NATO before mid-January, political sources told AFP on Thursday (Dec 28).

Sweden’s accession to the US-led Western alliance was approved by the foreign affairs committee on Tuesday, putting an end in sight to a 19-month standoff that drew the wrath of Türkiye’s Western partners.

ISTANBUL: Türkiye’s parliament is unlikely to hold a full vote on Sweden’s bid to join NATO before mid-January, political sources told AFP on Thursday (Dec 28).

Sweden’s accession to the US-led Western alliance was approved by the foreign affairs committee on Tuesday, putting an end in sight to a 19-month standoff that drew the wrath of Türkiye’s Western partners.

Erdogan made Türkiye’s ratification of Sweden’s application conditional on the US Congress “simultaneously” accepting Ankara’s request for 40 F-16 jets and spare parts.

Even though the US government has promised to move forward with the sale, its approval has met resistance from Congress.

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan discussed Sweden’s NATO admission in a phone call with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Wednesday, a diplomatic source said, a day after the protocol was greenlighted by the parliament committee.

Fidan told Blinken that Türkiye now expects the US administration and Congress to “to act in line with the spirit of alliance and to fulfil the commitments made” with regard to the F-16s.

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg hailed the parliamentary committee’s approval of Sweden’s NATO bid, urging Türkiye and fellow holdout Hungary to finish their ratifications “as soon as possible”.\

As the parliament will be in two-weeks recess, a timetable also “depends on the negotiations with the Americans”, another parliamentary source told AFP.

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