Turkey frustrates Finland’s and Sweden’s NATO bids

HELSINKI – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s dogged opposition to Sweden’s application for membership of NATO has stymied hopes in Stockholm and Helsinki that Ankara will give its approval ahead of parliamentary elections in Turkey slated for May 14. The already tense diplomatic relations between Turkey and Sweden were strained further on Jan. 21 when … Read more

How activists shaped Sweden’s NATO debacle – POLITICO

Elisabeth Braw is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and an advisor at Gallos Technologies. Sweden’s process to join NATO should have been the easiest accession in the alliance’s history — then Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan decided to play hardball, mixing legitimate fears about terrorism with electoral opportunistic politicking. Unfortunately, various activists … Read more

Middle East round-up: Turkey, Sweden, NATO and the Quran News

Turkey breaks off NATO talks with Sweden, the showdown between Lebanon’s chief prosecutor and the judge trying to charge him, and one of the West Bank’s deadliest days in years. Here’s this week’s round-up, written by Abubakr Al-Shamahi, Al Jazeera Digital’s Middle East and North Africa editor. Since May of last year, Sweden has been … Read more

Finland’s top diplomat hints at joining NATO without Sweden

HELSINKI (AP) – Finland’s foreign minister suggested Tuesday that the country may consider joining NATO without neighboring Sweden if Turkey continues to block their joint bid to enter the military alliance. Pekka Haavisto later backpedaled, but his comments were the first time a leading government official in either Nordic country appeared to raise doubts about … Read more

Quran burning in Sweden enrages Turkey, threatens NATO membership path

Sweden and Finland have taken another step in joining NATO, meaning only a formal ratification of their accession agreement is now left. Anadolu Agency | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images It’s now been eight months since Sweden and Finland declared their intent to join NATO, a move that upended the countries’ longstanding policies of non-alignment … Read more

US, European allies pledge more military firepower for Ukraine Russia-Ukraine war News

The United States and some of its European allies have announced significant new arms donations to Ukraine, including armored vehicles and heavy weaponry, ahead of a crucial meeting on bolstering the country’s defenses nearly a year after Russia invaded. The US said its package of military support – which includes armored personnel carriers, air defense … Read more

Sweden: Erdogan effigy ‘act of sabotage’ against NATO bid

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson on Friday denounced a protest by Kurds in central Stockholm, where an effigy of Turkey’s president was hung from a lamppost, as an act of “sabotage” against Sweden’s bid to join NATO.. The protest outside City Hall on Wednesday drew an angry backlash from Turkey, a … Read more

Sweden, Turkey not expected to back down in NATO accession tug of war

Sweden said on Sunday that Turkey is asking for too much in exchange for allowing it to join NATO, as Ankara effectively demands the impossible – that Stockholm override a decision by its own Supreme Court. But analysts say Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is unlikely to retract his condition, at least not before the … Read more

A battle over the future of Europe – POLITICO

Press play to listen to this article Voiced by artificial intelligence. Andrew A. Michta is dean of the College of International and Security Studies at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Strategy Initiative in the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. The war … Read more

Get Ukraine more weapons now, urge European ministers in Kyiv – POLITICO

KYIV — It’s all about the weapons — and we’ll do everything to get them to Kyiv. That was the message from Nordic and Baltic ministers who arrived in the snow-covered Ukrainian capital on Monday morning. The group — which includes foreign ministers from Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden — represents the … Read more