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Why did Turkey lift its veto on Finland and Sweden joining NATO?

PakistaniandProud

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Ankara has signed a trilateral memorandum agreement after obtaining concessions on demands it put forward in May.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has hailed the agreement with Finland and Sweden as a triumph [Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Turkish Presidential

Published On 29 Jun 2022

Turkey has lifted its veto over Finland and Sweden’s bid to join NATO, ending a weeks-long dispute that tested the unity of the alliance against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The breakthrough on Tuesday came after four hours of talks just before a NATO summit began in Madrid, and allows the gathering of 30 leaders in the Spanish capital to show a united front against Moscow, and start the process of Finland and Sweden’s inclusion in the alliance in earnest.

The announcement of an agreement cements the biggest shift in European security in decades, as the Nordic countries abandon their decades-long neutrality to enter the military alliance.

Here’s a look at why Turkey initially opposed Finland and Sweden’s NATO bid, and why it now backs their membership:

Why did Turkey initially oppose Finland and Sweden’s bid?​

  • Turkey surprised its NATO allies when it initially opposed Finland and Sweden’s bid to join the alliance.
  • Ankara demanded that the Nordic countries stop supporting Kurdish armed groups, such as the PKK, and lift their bans on the sales of some arms to Turkey.
  • Turkey raised concerns that Sweden had been harbouring PKK members, which Stockholm denied.
  • NATO operates by consensus, which means that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan could have blocked the accession of Finland and Sweden to the 30-nation alliance unless his demands were met, which he had threatened to do.

What is the PKK?​

  • The PKK, a designated “terrorist” group in Turkey, the European Union, and the United States, took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984.
  • Tens of thousands of people have died in Turkey as a result of the conflict between the Turkish state and the PKK, with the PKK and its offshoots carrying out numerous attacks on military, security forces and civilians, and Turkey conducting operations in southeastern parts of the country with the aim of forcing the PKK out.
  • Turkey considers any support for the Syrian YPG, which it views as an offshoot of the PKK, akin to support for the PKK. The YPG has been backed by many Western nations in the fight against ISIL (ISIS).
  • Turkey has conducted several military operations in both Syria and Iraq over the past few years, targeting the PKK and the YPG.

What did NATO and Turkey agree on?​

  • NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the terms of the deal involved Sweden intensifying work on Turkish extradition requests of suspected fighters and amending Swedish and Finnish law to toughen their approach to them.
  • Stoltenberg also said that Sweden and Finland would lift their restrictions on selling weapons to Turkey.
  • Ankara hailed the agreement as a triumph. The Turkish president’s office said that Turkey had “got what it wanted” from the deal, and that it meant “full cooperation with Turkey in the fight against the PKK and its affiliates,” including the YPG.
  • Finland and Sweden also agreed “not to impose embargo restrictions in the field of defence industry” on Turkey and to take “concrete steps on the extradition of terrorist criminals”.
  • A senior US administration official told Reuters that Turkey had not linked its longstanding request for American F-16 fighter jets to secure the deal. The US has previously blocked Turkey from acquiring F-35 fighter jets after Ankara purchased the S-400 missile defence system from Russia in 2017.
  • Erdogan said before leaving for Madrid that he would push US President Joe Biden on a deal for the F-16 fighter jets. Biden is expected to meet Erdogan during the summit.

What does this mean for NATO and the Russia-Ukraine war?​

  • Stoltenberg said NATO’s leaders would issue a formal invitation to Finland and Sweden to join on Wednesday.
  • It will still likely take months for Finland and Sweden to officially join NATO, as their entry into the alliance needs to be ratified by all individual member states.
  • NATO countries, which have already committed billions of dollars in military assistance to Ukraine, are expected to agree to a “comprehensive assistance package to Ukraine, to help them uphold the right for self-defence”, Stoltenberg said.
  • Russia has firmly opposed Finland and Sweden’s accession to NATO, seeing it as further encroachment of the transatlantic alliance towards Russian territory. NATO was established in 1949 as a defence alliance with the primary aim of confronting the Soviet Union, and is still viewed as a threat by Russia.
 

Hakikat ve Hikmet

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Turkey has got more than she has bargained for! How?
- PKK/YPG/YPD/FETO etc. are now officially terrorist organizations in all NATO countries. So hunting them inside and outside the borders would bring less questions.
- Presence in the Northern Iraq and Syria will be expanding further to fight against the aforementioned terrorist groups.
- NATO expansion means more Russian wrath on the Anglo-Saxons and their lackeys in Europe. Ankara is like: be my guests.
- The Greek bonhomie with the West is transactional as is the Turkish one. It's reassuring as Turkey is expanding exploration activities for the hydrocarbons in the Aegean and East Med regions.
- The last but not the least: F-16s!!!
 
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dBSPL

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If the TGNA approves this bill and these countries become NATO allies, the most important geopolitical gain for Turkiye is that Russia will inevitably have to focus its attention on the baltic region.

While Russia is expanding its influence in the Caucasus, Syria, and even in Libya and Africa via Wagner, by using its hard power; the NATO countries in question were either cooperating with the Russians (like France) or burying their heads in the sand. Now the threat will be on their neck. Because Russia has to respond sharply to the Baltic expansion.
 

vi-va

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Turkey has veto power, but this is only theoretically.
The NATO rely on hard power, to be specific, Sweden and Finland rely on U.S. deterrence.

U.S. can provide deterrence with/without Turkey agreement. Turkey has a card, but not the power to back the veto.

Turkey is not net security provider of NATO, while the West, especially, U.S., U.K. and France are.

Turkey got some lip services from Sweden and Finland, but that's about it.

For instance:
The veto power of P5 in Security Council of UN rely on Hard Power. While the hard power of P5 are quite different.

  1. U.S. has veto power without UN
  2. China can screw thing up if anything hurts China's core interest
  3. France, U.K. need to seek U.S.'s agreement if they want to veto anything
  4. Russia has veto power on the border without UN

The veto power comes from how far your power can project, how strong your hard power is. not the procedure.
 
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vi-va

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If the TGNA approves this bill and these countries become NATO allies, the most important geopolitical gain for Turkiye is that Russia will inevitably have to focus its attention on the baltic region.

While Russia is expanding its influence in the Caucasus, Syria, and even in Libya and Africa via Wagner, by using its hard power; the NATO countries in question were either cooperating with the Russians (like France) or burying their heads in the sand. Now the threat will be on their neck. Because Russia has to respond sharply to the Baltic expansion.
True. NATO expansion fit Turkey interest. Turkey used the card to blackmail Sweden and Finland, very well.
But in the end, Turkey would not stop Sweden and Finland from joining NATO.

After all, Turkey dislike Russia involvement in Syria as much as Israel.
 

Readerdefence

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Hi in coming years or may be half a decade or so basic and foremost enemy of usa and west is now officially though they were there before is China & Russia so for the time being Iran and some extent Muslim countries are in hold now so even Turkey can be asked to send troops to fight with these two under the NATO umbrella
thank you
 

musti

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Actually RTE was not aganist their membership.

RTE tried the best for getting as much as . He played well and gained some .

Not all but not bad.
 

vi-va

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Actually RTE was not aganist their membership.

RTE tried the best for getting as much as . He played well and gained some .

Not all but not bad.
It's in Turkey's core interest to let Russia force move north, isn't it? The Russia force in Syria annoys Turkey a lot.
I am just stating the facts and logic.
 

WotTen

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U.S. can provide deterrence with/without Turkey agreement. Turkey has a card, but not the power to back the veto.

You're right.

Erdogan got maximum domestic mileage out of this and squeezed some concessions from Europe. Whether these concessions are consequential or just symbolic remains to be seen.

If Turkey had persisted, it would have created bad blood between it and Europe/US which would have been exploited by its enemies for years. The US is the only country that matters militarily and it would have gone ahead with a separate security pact with Sweden and Finland anyway. The US would not even have allowed France or Germany to stop this alliance, never mind Turkey.
 

vi-va

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You're right.

Erdogan got maximum domestic mileage out of this and squeezed some concessions from Europe. Whether these concessions are consequential or just symbolic remains to be seen.

If Turkey had persisted, it would have created bad blood between it and Europe/US which would have been exploited by its enemies for years. The US is the only country that matters militarily and it would have gone ahead with a separate security pact with Sweden and Finland anyway. The US would not even have allowed France or Germany to stop this alliance, never mind Turkey.
True.

But you knew that, it's in U.S.'s interest to drag NATO into this war, not U.S. itself only. This makes France, Germany literally cut ties with Russia, politically, economically and militarily.
 

dBSPL

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True.

But you knew that, it's in U.S.'s interest to drag NATO into this war, not U.S. itself only. This makes France, Germany literally cut ties with Russia, politically, economically and militarily.
France will never cut off relations with Russia. (If you push France too hard, they might even leave from NATO's military wing, they've done that once in the past.) On the contrary, France is always a state that seeks harmonious relations with Russia, even in certain frameworks of alliance. This is so obvious that even the French president, Macron, has expressed it many times in various ways.

Apart from France, many EU member states either have deep ties with Russia or intend to maintain good relations. If you examine the content removed from the EU sanctions package, and research which countries these requests come from, you can find a lot.

'break your ties with Russia' rhetoric is a populist approach developed with the aim of pushing some countries, like Turkiye, into a political corner. In the foreground, everyone is blaming countries like Turkiye, while in the background, many EU countries have a much deeper relationship.

By the way, my personal opinion is on to improve the dialogue between Russia and Europe. Some of us are on the wings, some in the centre, but as a result, we are all part of the European continent, inc Russia. One of the most ridiculous events in the history of the world is that the state on the other side of the Atlantic has taken the political climate of the whole European continent hostage.
 

vi-va

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France will never cut off relations with Russia. (If you push France too hard, they might even leave from NATO's military wing, they've done that once in the past.) On the contrary, France is always a state that seeks harmonious relations with Russia, even in certain frameworks of alliance. This is so obvious that even the French president, Macron, has expressed it many times in various ways.

Apart from France, many EU member states either have deep ties with Russia or intend to maintain good relations. If you examine the content removed from the EU sanctions package, and research which countries these requests come from, you can find a lot.

'break your ties with Russia' rhetoric is a populist approach developed with the aim of pushing some countries, like Turkiye, into a political corner. In the foreground, everyone is blaming countries like Turkiye, while in the background, many EU countries have a much deeper relationship.

By the way, my personal opinion is on to improve the dialogue between Russia and Europe. Some of us are on the wings, some in the centre, but as a result, we are all part of the European continent, inc Russia. One of the most ridiculous events in the history of the world is that the state on the other side of the Atlantic has taken the political climate of the whole European continent hostage.
True. Cold War has ended, new geopolitical reality need new friends, alliance and enemy.

What I say is U.S. is trying to leverage the Ukraine War to force France and Germany to choose side, though France and Germany are not necessarily willing to do so.

The EU and U.S. had been playing good cop and bad cop game for a long time since Cold War. The Russians keep losing buffer zones and influence in Central Europe and East Europe. Russians are tired of this game.

But what can France and Germany provide to Russians? They have little control over Ukraine, nor do they have enough influence on U.S.

As long as Russians keep advancing militarily, and Ukrainians keep fighting. France and Germany have to toe the line.

A big win of U.S.

But you knew that, it's in U.S.'s interest to drag NATO into this war, not U.S. itself only. This makes France, Germany literally cut ties with Russia, politically, economically and militarily.
 

Kaptan Reis

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France will never cut off relations with Russia. (If you push France too hard, they might even leave from NATO's military wing, they've done that once in the past.) On the contrary, France is always a state that seeks harmonious relations with Russia, even in certain frameworks of alliance. This is so obvious that even the French president, Macron, has expressed it many times in various ways.

Apart from France, many EU member states either have deep ties with Russia or intend to maintain good relations. If you examine the content removed from the EU sanctions package, and research which countries these requests come from, you can find a lot.

'break your ties with Russia' rhetoric is a populist approach developed with the aim of pushing some countries, like Turkiye, into a political corner. In the foreground, everyone is blaming countries like Turkiye, while in the background, many EU countries have a much deeper relationship.

By the way, my personal opinion is on to improve the dialogue between Russia and Europe. Some of us are on the wings, some in the centre, but as a result, we are all part of the European continent, inc Russia. One of the most ridiculous events in the history of the world is that the state on the other side of the Atlantic has taken the political climate of the whole European continent hostage.
There is no chance that the France out of NATO, and no chance that it will join Russia.
The France depends on the protection of NATO, the France supplied arms to Ukraine, it also has officers who help train Ukrainians.
I am sure that after all these deliveries that are causing casualties among the Russians, Putin will not appreciate.
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