Turkey's demands to NATO revealed
Ankara's threat to obstruct Finland and Sweden's bids have nothing to do with Russia, according to reports.
Citing "three senior Turkish officials," Bloomberg revealed Turkey's demands for NATO and prospective members Finland and Sweden.
These demands include the removal of sanctions imposed on Ankara over its purchase of S-400 missile defense systems from Russia, as well as re-inclusion in the F-35 advanced aircraft program.
In the aftermath of the war in Ukraine, Finland and Sweden officially announced their intention to join NATO on May 15. To make it happen, all alliance members must support their bids unanimously.
Read next: Finland, Sweden officially apply to join NATO
Finland and Sweden handed in their bids to join the US-led military alliance NATO earlier today.
Turkey, however, said it would not back Helsinki and Stockholm because they do not have “a clear unequivocal stance” against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Revolutionary People’s Liberation Front, groups that Ankara considers terrorist organizations.
1. Denouncing PKK and affiliates
According to Bloomberg, Turkish leadership demands that Sweden and Finland “publicly denounce not only the PKK, but also its affiliates before being allowed to join the bloc.”
2. Lift trade restrictions on Turkey
The Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that his country also wants Sweden and Finland to lift trade restrictions imposed on Turkey. However, as Bloomberg sources revealed under the condition of anonymity, Turkey has a large wish list.
3. Re-included in the F-35 aircraft program
“Turkey wants to be re-included in the F-35 advanced aircraft program, from which it was barred after it bought S-400 missile-defense systems from Russia. It also has an outstanding request to the US to purchase dozens of F-16 warplanes and upgrade kits for its existing fleet,” Bloomberg writes.
4. US to ease sanctions on Turkey
Ankara also wants the United States to ease sanctions placed on it for purchasing S-400 weaponry. However, the agency's sources denied that Turkey's objections to Finland and Sweden's NATO membership were tied to Ankara's connections with Moscow.
Russia has cautioned Helsinki and Stockholm not to join the group and has guaranteed an appropriate response if they do.