Finland’s latest Nato talks with Turkey, Sweden fail to find resolution

The head of the Swedish delegation in Brussels told reporters that progress is unlikely before Turkish elections, scheduled for 14 May.

The latest round of trilateral talks between Finland, Sweden and Turkey over stalled applications by the two Nordic nations to join the Nato military alliance concluded on Thursday evening without any significant progress.

Oscar Stenström — who is leading the Swedish delegation — told reporters after the meeting that the Turkish delegation noted the progress both Finland and Sweden have made towards meeting Ankara’s demands.

Turkey also proposed continuing discussions, Stenström noted, although a date has yet to be formally agreed.

Turkey and Hungary are the only two Nato member states yet to ratify the Finnish and Swedish applications, although the Hungarian parliament is expected to vote on the issue later this month.

Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who attended Thursday’s meeting in Brussels, reiterated once again that Finland and Sweden must become Nato members by time of the alliance’s Vilnius summit in July.

However, Stenström said he thinks it is unlikely any significant progress before Turkey’s parliamentary and presidential elections, due to be held on 14 May.

He added that the idea of Finland joining Nato ahead of Sweden — an option that has been mooted due to a deterioration in Turkish-Swedish relations — was not discussed at Thursday’s meeting.

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