Turkish president rules out backing Sweden joining NATO unless it ends attacks on Quran - ednews.net

22 March, Wednesday

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Turkish president rules out backing Sweden joining NATO unless it ends attacks on Quran

'As long as Sweden permits burning Quran, Türkiye will not say yes to Stockholm's NATO bid,' says Recep Tayyip Erdogan

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Türkiye rules out greenlighting Sweden joining NATO as long as it permits attacks on Islam’s holy book the Quran, the country's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday.

"We will not say yes to (Sweden’s) entry into NATO as long as you allow our holy book, the Quran, to be burned, torn apart, and to be done with (the approval of) your security personnel," Erdogan said, referring to the recent burning of a Quran in Stockholm, the capital.
"We closely follow developments regarding NATO's enlargement process. Our view on Finland is positive, but not on Sweden," he said, signaling a willingness to support Finland's NATO bid separately from Sweden’s.
His remarks came after Danish-Swedish extremist Rasmus Paludan last week burned copies of the Quran on two separate occasions, first outside the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm and then later in front of a mosque in Denmark. Paludan also said he would burn the Muslim holy book every Friday until Sweden is admitted to the NATO alliance.
Sweden and Finland formally applied to join NATO last May, a decision spurred by Russia's war on Ukraine, which started on Feb. 24, 2022.
Under a memorandum signed last June between Türkiye, Sweden, and Finland, the two Nordic countries pledged to take steps against terrorists to gain membership in the NATO alliance.
In the agreement, Sweden and Finland agreed not to provide support to terrorist groups such as the PKK and its offshoots, and the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), and to extradite terror suspects to Türkiye, among other steps.
Unanimous agreement from all NATO members – including Türkiye, a member for more than 70 years – is needed for any new members to be admitted to the alliance.

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