The Prospects of NATO Enlargement: Türkiye’s Stance on Finland and Sweden’s Membership
Sweden and Finland applied to join NATO last month, breaking their long-standing neutral status following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. As fears about potential Russian military actions in Eastern Europe and the Baltic region reached their highest levels in years, Türkiye has voiced its reservations about Finland and Sweden’s membership applications. Citing the two Nordic countries’ stances on terrorism, the Turkish leadership has indicated that Finland and Sweden need to take “concrete steps” to address Türkiye’s concerns. Expressing hope that the Turkish reservations can be overcome, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Türkiye’s concerns about terrorism were legitimate. As we approach NATO’s Madrid Summit at the end of June, it remains unclear how the NATO members will handle Finland and Sweden’s inclusion in the alliance given Turkish objections.
How will Türkiye’s position shape NATO’s enlargement prospects? Can NATO members address the issues raised by Türkiye? What lies ahead for NATO’s internal unity on enlargement in the wake of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine?
The SETA Foundation at Washington DC is pleased to host a panel of distinguished experts to analyze the future of NATO enlargement and its implications for the international system.
Luke Coffey, Director, Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies, The Heritage Foundation
Burhanettin Duran, General Coordinator, The SETA Foundation
Kadir Ustun, Executive Director, The SETA Foundation at Washington DC