Turkey’s President Erdogan signals he’ll block Finland and Sweden’s NATO applications, claiming they’re home to ‘terrorist organizations’

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at NATO headquarters in Brussels, May 25, 2017.Kay Nietfeld/picture alliance via Getty Images

  • Sweden and Finland’s ascent to NATO membership hit a roadblock Friday.

  • Turkey’s president said he wouldn’t accept either country joining as they are home to “terrorist organizations.”

  • All current NATO members must agree to any new nation joining the alliance.

Turkey’s president suggested that he will attempt to stop Sweden and Finland from joining NATO.

Sweden and Finland are soon expected to apply to join the military alliance, a development prompted by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

But Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday that he did not support their plans.

“We are following the developments regarding Sweden and Finland, but we don’t hold positive views,” he said, according to Reuters.

“As Turkey, we don’t want to repeat similar mistakes. Furthermore, Scandinavian countries are guesthouses for terrorist organizations,” Erdogan said.

NATO members can only join if all of the group’s existing members agree unanimously on them joining, meaning that Turkey failing to approve their entry would halt any application.

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