Slovakia says NATO allies ‘carefully’ listen to Turkiye’s views

Foreign Minister Korcok says he is confident that solution will be found to address concerns over Finland, Sweden’s expected NATO bids

Ayhan Simsek  | 15.05.2022 - Update : 15.05.2022
Slovakia says NATO allies ‘carefully’ listen to Turkiye’s views FILE PHOTO


Slovakia’s foreign minister said on Sunday that he is confident that a solution will be found to address Turkiye’s concerns about Finland and Sweden’s expected NATO membership bids.

“Turkiye is a very important and valued ally, we listen carefully to our good colleague Mevlut Cavusoglu,” Ivan Korcok told reporters on arrival at informal NATO foreign ministers meeting in Berlin.

“I’m absolutely certain that we’ll find a solution,” he stressed.

Korcok underlined Slovakia’s support for NATO’s open-door policy, and membership of Finland and Sweden in NATO.

“We’re looking at the ways how to find consensus in order to respond positively to Finnish and Swedish request to become members,” he said.

Both Finland and Sweden have signaled that they may submit simultaneous membership applications to NATO in the coming days.

Turkiye voiced skepticism about their membership applications, and heavily criticized the two countries for tolerating PKK and YPG terror groups.

In a doorstep statement ahead of the informal NATO foreign ministers' meeting, Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Saturday that Turkiye has always backed NATO's open-door policy.

However, he said governments of Sweden and Finland were “openly supporting” and engaging with terrorist organizations like PKK and YPG, which continue to launch violent attacks targeting Turkish troops and civilians.

"That's why the big majority of the Turkish people are against the membership of those countries,” he said.

In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Turkiye, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkiye, the US, and the EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of over 40,000 people. The YPG is the PKK's Syrian offshoot.

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