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01.07.2022 17:57 News >> Time To See Implementation Of Commitments By Finland, Sweden: Turkish President

Time To See Implementation Of Commitments By Finland, Sweden: Turkish President

Türkiye will continue to respond to 'constant provocations' by Greece, Erdogan says.

Signing a memorandum to address Türkiye's terrorism concerns was the first step, and now it is time for Sweden and Finland to implement their commitments, the Turkish president said on Friday.
Speaking at the National Defense University's graduation ceremony in Istanbul, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said if the two Nordic countries stick to the conditions set in the trilateral agreement, Türkiye will not oppose their membership into NATO.
But if we see any signs of stalling or hypocrisy, we will return to our old position, he added.
Sweden and Finland formally applied to join the alliance in May, a decision spurred by Russia's war on Ukraine.
But Türkiye, a longstanding member of the alliance, voiced objections to the membership bids, criticizing the countries for tolerating and even supporting terrorist groups.
Ahead of NATO's Madrid summit, Türkiye, Finland, and Sweden on Tuesday signed a memorandum following four-way talks in Madrid. The agreement allows the two Nordic countries to become NATO members, but conditions them to take steps on Türkiye's terrorism concerns, and lift an arms embargo on Ankara.
Following the agreement, NATO formally invited the two Nordic countries to join the 30-member military alliance.
Touching on ties with Greece, Erdogan said Türkiye is aware of "distraction activities that are carried out by using Greece."
He said Türkiye will continue to respond to "constant provocations" by Greece and violation of Turkish airspace.
Türkiye will protect its land, sea and air borders on the country's west, without any concession of rights in the Aegean Sea, and by making full use of the opportunities arising from international agreements, he added.
Erdogan said Athens does not seem to resolve conflicts through dialogue and negotiation. "I hope Greeks, through democratic means, will give the necessary message and lesson to their rulers, who are pursuing adventures that will end in disaster for them," he said.
Last month, the Turkish president criticized Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis for his comments on Türkiye during an official visit to the US, saying that the Greek premier is no longer fit to deal with.
Türkiye in recent months has also stepped up criticism of Greece stationing troops on islands in the eastern Aegean, near the Turkish coast and in many cases visible from shore.
These islands were required to be demilitarized under the 1923 Treaty of Lausanne and the 1947 Treaty of Paris, so any troops or weapons on the islands are strictly forbidden. -



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