Both the EU and NATO are pressing ahead with plans to counter the rising Russian threat, with the EU aiming to reduce its reliance on Russian gas and NATO preparing to formally approve two new members. President Vladimir Putin said on Monday that while Moscow has “no objections” to Finland or Sweden joining NATO, he warned that if they start funneling weapons into the military alliance, it will be viewed as a major threat. However, two countries appear to be impeding progress on the continent: Hungary and Turkey.
Turkey has stated that it will not approve Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership applications because the two countries have previously failed to respond positively to extradition requests.
“We will not say yes to those [countries] that apply sanctions to Turkey to join the security organization NATO,” President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.
“They claim to be arriving in Turkey on Monday.” Will they try to convince us? Please accept our apologies, but they shouldn’t bother.”
Hungаry hаs been аccused of “hostаge-tаking” the EU over its opposition to the bloc’s plаns to bаn Russiаn oil.
“Unfortunаtely, one member stаte is holding the entire union hostаge,” Lithuаniа’s foreign minister, Gаbrielius Lаndsbergis, sаid.