Turkish Parliament delays discussions on Sweden's NATO bid

Turkish Parliament delays discussions on Sweden's NATO bid

BAKU. TurkicWorld :

Parliament's foreign affairs commission decided to delay discussions on the approval of Sweden's NATO accession on Thursday, reports TurkicWorld with the reference to Daily Sabah.

Commission Chairperson Fuat Oktay said the commission may bring the bill back on its agenda next week but did not set a clear timeline. Further talks on the bill will be held due to current discussions not being final yet.

"For all of our lawmakers to approve Sweden's NATO membership, they need to be fully convinced. We will discuss all of these in our (next) commission meeting (on the issue)," Oktay said after hours of debate.

The commission can pass bills by a simple majority. It may invite the Swedish ambassador to brief lawmakers if needed and if Parliament's regulations allow it, Oktay added.

Sweden and Finland requested to join NATO in May of last year in the face of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Sweden believes it has done everything to address Türkiye's concerns, but its case for membership in NATO rests now in lawmakers' hands.

The bill must be approved by Parliament's foreign affairs commission before a vote by the full general assembly. Erdoğan would then sign it into law.

While saying Ankara expected more from Sweden in combating the PKK terrorist group, Erdoğan said this month that he would try to facilitate the ratification as much as possible.

Oktay, the former vice president who now heads the foreign affairs commission, said earlier this month that the issue was not so urgent for Türkiye and, thus, would be included in its regular agenda rather than be discussed in an extraordinary session. "Sweden's NATO membership is just one of the international agreements on our agenda waiting for ratification," Oktay told a lawmakers meeting on Tuesday.