Haavisto: Finland might have to consider joining NATO without Sweden

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Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto.
Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto. Source: SCANPIX/Henrik MONTGOMER /TT News Agency / AFP/Sweden OUT

Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto (Green) told the country's public broadcaster Yle on Tuesday that Finland might be forced to consider joining NATO without its long-time ally Sweden due to opposition from Ankara.

Asked whether Finland should stick with its pledge of joining the alliance at the same time as Sweden, Haavisto admitted that the country should reserve the right to rethink that strategy if necessary.

He suggested that while it is too soon to take a view on whether the preferred option of joining with Sweden is feasible or not, Finland needs to be ready to "reevaluate the situation."

Sweden has seen large-scale protests against Turkey in recent weeks, culminating in an event at the weekend where a far-right Danish-Swedish provocateur burned a copy of the Quran.

On Monday evening, President Reccep Tayyip Erdogan said that Sweden "should not expect support from us for NATO".

The Finnish foreign minister said that Finland, Sweden and Turkey are looking to hold a new three-way meeting to evaluate the situation.

Swedish Foreign Minister Tobias Billström told Swedish SVT that he is in contact with Finland to try and make sense of the statement.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

Source: Yle

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