‘Seun Ibukun-Oni, Abuja
Daily Courier – Announcement comes day after Finland said it intends to join the alliance in shake-up of Europe’s security architecture.
Sweden’s government confirms the Nordic country will follow Finland and apply for NATO membership after decades of non-alignment.
Hungary says a proposed European Union ban on Russian oil imports is unacceptable in its current form as the bloc weighs a possible sixth round of sanctions on Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin warns new military infrastructure in Finland and Sweden would necessitate a response from Moscow.
‘Further escalation remains possible’: Scholz
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said he sees no sign of an imminent end to the war in Ukraine and warned that a further escalation remains possible.
There had so far been no sign that people had realized the importance of ending the conflict “as quickly as possible,” Scholz told German broadcaster RTL, adding that he was also concerned there could be “an escalation of the war.”
“We must be able to make sensible, very deliberate and also very courageous decisions – and we have made those,” Scholz said, before reiterating that he would not make any decision that could lead to a direct conflict between NATO and Russia.
France will defend Finland, Sweden against whatever threat or attack
The French presidential office has said that France stands ready to support Finland and Sweden, who recently chose to join NATO, politically and through “enhanced military interactions”, and protect the country against any threats or aggressions.
“Whomever [sic] would seek to test European solidarity by threatening or attacking their sovereignty… must be certain that France will stand shoulder to shoulder with Finland and Sweden”, the Elysee said in the English version of a press release.
Swedish, Finnish diplomats to head to Turkey for NATO talks
Senior representatives of Sweden and Finland plan to travel to Turkey for talks to address Ankara’s objections to NATO membership for the two Nordic countries, the Swedish foreign office has said.
The representatives would meet their Turkish counterparts, in the capital, a foreign ministry spokesperson said.
Erdogan says Swedish, Finnish delegations should not bother coming to Turkey
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that Swedish and Finnish delegations should not bother coming to Ankara to convince it to approve their NATO bid.
In a news conference, Erdogan said Turkey would not approve their bids to join NATO, calling Sweden a “hatchery” for terrorist organisations, and adding they had terrorists in their parliament.
Ankara says Sweden and Finland harbor people it says are linked to groups it deems terrorists, namely the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) armed group and followers of Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara accuses of orchestrating the 2016 coup attempt.
Turkey ‘will not say yes’ to NATO membership for Sweden, Finland
Erdogan says President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has confirmed Turkey’s opposition to NATO membership for Finland and Sweden, again accusing them of failing to take a clear stance against terrorism.
“We will not say ‘yes’ to those [countries] who apply sanctions to Turkey to join security organisation NATO,” Erdogan said.
Canada says it is in favour of ‘quick’ accession to NATO for Sweden, Finland
Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly has said Canada was in favour of a “quick” accession to the NATO military alliance for Sweden and Finland.
“Canada not only favors their accession [to NATO], I would say we favor a quick accession of these two countries,” Joly told reporters.