ANKARA, March 17 (KUNA) -- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared on Friday Ankara's approval of Finland's joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), according to the official news agency, Anadolu.
Noting that Finland has fulfilled Turkiye's security concerns, President Erdogan said at a joint news conference with his Finnish counterpart Sauli Niinisto in Ankara, "We have decided to launch the approval process of Finland's NATO membership protocol in our Parliament."
"NATO will become stronger with Finland's membership, and I believe it will play an active role in maintaining global security and stability," Erdogan added.
On Sweden's process, Erdogan said that Turkiye will continue its talks with Sweden "on the basis of the principles of the alliance and our approach to the fight against terrorism."
Saying that Stockholm "has embraced terrorists, which was not the case for Finland," the Turkish president said: "How the process will progress will be directly linked to the concrete steps which Sweden will take."
For his part, Niinisto thanked Ankara on behalf of all Finnish people for the approval and said "it is an important news for all." (end)